Both of my girls are in the hospital right now.
Nancy, my younger daughter (my biological child) is in the OR as I write this having her tonsils removed. At 17, it’s a bit of a hit but it is incredibly necessary. She’s had so much trouble with mononucleosis and the after-effects of it during the past year, and the tonsils were the root of many of her problems. So with any luck she will have a great recovery, she’ll get her voice back, and she won’t need to worry about illness for some time to come.
Kerry, my older daughter (technically, she’s my step-daughter, but I consider her to be my child just as much as my own are) is pregnant. I haven’t written about this for a couple of reasons: first, I didn’t have her permission. I do now. Second, she’s been fairly high-risk all along and we didn’t know what was going to happen. Also, there was some question about whether or not she wanted her own father to know about the pregnancy, and she was pretty conflicted about it. That said, he does know – apparently, he’s known for quite some time, according to what he told my wife. How this came to be, I don’t know. But I have thoughts on that, and I’ll talk about it some later in another post.
In any case, Kerry is at 28 weeks of gestation. Not quite enough time for lungs to be developed; that is expected at approximately 32 weeks. She’s gotten doses of steroids to aid in the baby’s lung development in the event that she’d have to deliver early. The OB-GYN and the other medical providers are doing everything they can to keep that from happening so that the baby will have enough time. There is also the question of Kerry’s health in all of this; she’s gotten great pre-natal care – both her boyfriend and the two of us have made sure of that – and she has really taken superb care of herself. WIth younger women (Kerry’s 18th birthday is in 9 days), however, the risks can be sometimes greater.
I have to say that from the time she found out she was pregnant up to now it’s been amazing in terms of the changes she’s gone through. The biggest thing I’ve seen is how much she has matured in the past 6 months. She’s had no choice; a lot has been put on her with this pregnancy, including the lesson of taking responsibility for one’s actions. In watching her, it appears that she’s learned that lesson incredibly well. But there is more than that; she’s finally started to realize that we’re there to help her, not get in her way. Especially now, as I suspect she’ll need us for some time before she gets on her feet. Plus, Scotty, her boyfriend, has been on point throughout this whole experience. They have shown us considerable character; to be truthful, I wasn’t sure they could do that. But I was pleasantly surprised – they both are doing the right thing. And they care about each other considerably, which we’re both happy about.
Note: as I finished the last paragraph, Nancy came in from the recovery area. She did well and looks good, and as I type this she is working on a popsicle.