Monday, May 29, 2006

May 30, 1991 - St. Joseph's Hospital, London, Ontario
The day my life changed.
After two nights of labour and wishing I had actually paid attention in pre-natal class, I finally cried convincingly enough to persuade the nurses to give me an epidural.

You were so little and so yellow. And when one of the nurses told your Baba, "she's got a temper", Baba ripped into her with a "what do you mean?" and stuck her finger in the nurse's face. So I guess you came by it honestly.

I remember after we were finally home from the hospital, I went out by myself for the first time since you were born. I got into the van and started to drive toward the bank when I suddenly realized that I was alone and I had my bank card and a full tank of gas. I could take all the money out of the bank and just keep driving. They would never find me. But I'm glad I didn't.

Besides May in London was a wonderful time and place to take long walks down to Wortley Village, stopping at the bakery and the library and the ice cream shop where they had a jar of dog biscuits and water bowls for passing dogs and the little gift shop that sold glass window hangings.

And when you got a little older we hung out at the playgrounds and made friends with the other Eva and Catherine and Mac and Margot and Marshall and Harris and Heidi and Sean. I remember arriving at the playground one time and I commented that the slide looked pretty full and you said "well, I think there's enough room for this little four-year-old".
And the bus that took us downtown was a 3-minute walk from our house, besides we could walk downtown in 40 minutes and often did, stopping at Covent Garden Market for samples of olives and feta cheese from the grumpy old Greek guys and the best frozen yogurt in the history of frozen yogurt at the Juice Bar. Oh, and do you remember the rides? 10 cents would get you about 5 minutes on the elephant or the speedboat. That speedboat ride was cool, too.

You were such a precocious little kid, with a serious expression on your face when you weren't wrinkling up your nose for the camera. I wish we had a digital camera back then so I could show pictures of the amazing ringlets you had back then. Remember when you ate that huge snail?

I loved taking you by the hand and showing you the world and I always knew that one day you would be showing the world to me. I just never dreamt it would be so soon.

Shine on, my darling. You are my world.



32 comments:

eva said...

This made me cry!

I love you, Mom.

Alana said...

Barbara, you wrote that so beautifully, I don't even really know you or Eva, and I got teary-eyed myself. Congrats on the amazing experience Barbara, and happy, happy birthday to you Eva!

Stephanie said...

awwwww
:)

Barbara said...

Happy Birthday Eva! Just don't grow up too fast I don't know if your Mother can take it.
;-)

Maureen said...

That was beautiful - happy birthday Eva, you've got quite a mom there.

Barbara Bruederlin said...

I love you, Eva. You are the best kid a mom could possibly have.

Thanks Alana, Stephanie, Barbara W, and Maureen. 15 years flew by far too quickly for my liking, probably far too slowly for Eva's.

Ben Heller said...

I can tell you're a proud mum Barbara. Happy Birthday to Eva

Will said...

That was very, very sweet and a joy to read.

Evelyne said...

That's so sweet!

Happy Birthday Eva!

Barbara Bruederlin said...

Ben, am I wearing my heart on my sleeve again? She does make me proud.

Thanks, Will, but there goes my carefully cultivated reputation as a crusty old curmudgeon.

Thanks Evelyne, I'll pass along your wishes.

Allison said...

Oh, the tears. Barbara that was so sweet.
Happy birthday to you Eva!

John Mutford said...

For a brief second I thought that George Snufalupagus er, Stombulopolis was your son.

Anyway, Happy Birthday to Eva (she sounds even cooler than George).

phlegmfatale said...

What a beautiful tribute to such a lovely daughter. Oh, and we at the Phlegmfatale Institute of Uppity Women™ approve of ladies with a temper, even the newborn variety. Long may she wave!

Barbara Bruederlin said...

Oh no, tears for you too, Allison? Sorry. But I shall pass along your greetings.

Thanks a lot, John! I'm not quite THAT old! Although I suppose I could have been George's babysitter.
But yes, George had better watch his back - new cool kid gaining ground on him.

Oh Phlgemmy, you'd LOVE my mother-in-law!
Thank you for that, we shall be applying for a scholarship for Eva to attend finishing school at the PIUW.

Jas Bhambra said...

That was beautiful, Barb...
And Happy Birthday, Eva, that's quite a Mom you have. :)

They grow so quickly, Barb. My niece turned 14 this year and I can still remember the day she was born, and how little she was when I came over to this side....

I am going to cry now....

Barbara Bruederlin said...

Don't cry Jas! But damn, those years sure go quickly don't they?

hilary m. said...

aww. that's the best birthday greeting a 15year old could wish for.

Barbara Bruederlin said...

That's so sweet of you to say, Hilary. I think Eva had a really good birthday.

~Jen~ said...

so nice...i hope i feel that fond of my daughter one day hahahahhaha

Barbara Bruederlin said...

Jen, it'll happen - she's just visiting the dark side right now. She'll be back.

WolfHeart RavenHorse said...

She made me cry too Eva! Yikes! That was beautiful Barb!!!!!!!

Bev

Barbara Bruederlin said...

Aw Thanks Bev! Some many tears around this place. Time to lighten things up a bit, I think.

John Mutford said...

Barbara B,
Ooops. That was a joke about the picture, not your age. And I know mispelling George's name is like heresy around these parts. No offense intended with that either!

Rupert said...

those were powerful words.

tydes said...

happy birthday eva.

and what a way with words, barbara! awesome.

michelle said...

Happy Solar Return dear Eva! What a beauty she is, Barbara - inside & out.

*uncorks the Mumm*

Hugs & kisses & streamers!

Barbara Bruederlin said...

Thanks Rob! I shall be coming over to check out your new blog soon.

That's kind of you to say, Jeff, I'll pass along your greetings. Say, how do I get enter your blog now? You've locked the door on me, man!

Aww, Michelle, I think so tooand hopefully one day she will realize it as well. Thanks for the champagne!

Jacquie said...

What a lovely birthday tribute.
You are so generous and loving when you speak of your beloved family (mom, sis, daughter).
Hmm..maybe your bad temper is all a front and hides a big softie!

Barbara Bruederlin said...

Sssshhhhh, Jacquie! A lot of work has gone into my image. I don't want it tarnished or people will start expecting me to be nice to them. (but thanks so much for your kind words)

Barbara Bruederlin said...

Sorry John, I missed answering you somehow. Oh no offense taken at all, my dear. It was a hilarious line!
I don't know how anybody could possibly mispell George Stroumboulongname's name. It's so simple.

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