Once they got into the delivery room things went faster. I had hoped she’d hold off for another day so the baby would be born on the 4th of July but my DIL was so exhausted she couldn’t push any more. She’d had her heart set on natural childbirth but it was decided she’d have to have an epidural. Soon, DS1 came out with a big smile saying the baby had made her appearance. It was July 3, 1995.
At that point, we were allowed into the delivery room and there was my DIL smiling through her tears. She sobbed and said, “I’m so sorry I couldn’t do it!” I told her the object was to have a baby and she had accomplished that for sure. It didn’t matter at that point how the baby had come into the world. It happened. It was a success.
We were able to see a tiny face peeking from the blanket she was swathed with. There was a little pink ‘boggan on her head (cover her head to keep her feet warm?). The visible parts were beautiful.
After a few minutes, DD and I left for home.
I worked like a Trojan the next day to get the end-of-the-month report done and turned in. Then it was home to pick up DD and we headed to the hospital again.
DIL had been moved to a nice big room with a couch and chairs at one end. When we got there, she was holding court and showing off the new princess. They were planning to go home the next day. Insurance had approved more time in the hospital but she couldn’t bear not being able to take full responsibility for the Bundle of Joy.
It was a good thing we didn’t have such high gas prices then. We kept the road hot going to see my granddaughter and DD’s niece.
All too soon, I had to take DD back to the academy.
Another month and a half and school was back in session. DD was a big junior. One of the favorite Saturday night activities was organized chaos labeled Junk Scramble. They’d have all sorts of Stuff spread out or in pockets and the person in charge would shout out the name of an object. The two teams would scramble to find whatever it was (maybe a Q-tip or a comb) and get it to the line first. That went on one Saturday night until DD was bent over picking up the designated piece of “junk” and one of her teammates straightened up. His shoulder met her nose with such force she had to be taken to the emergency room. The doctor examined her. There wasn’t much he could do for a broken nose. He told her she could have surgery later to correct any malformation.
It was all over by the time I heard about it. She was philosophical and said it was no big deal. Sure, it hurt, but she’d be okay. No, there was no need for me to come down there.
Next home leave, I took a good look. Her nose didn’t appear to be a whole lot different. It leaned a little to one side but not noticeably so. I asked her if she would be willing to have surgery to correct it and she said no. She has never been a big fan of pain so she figured she would let well enough alone. Later, I saw a picture of Harrison Ford. His nose leans to one side and he’s done okay for himself. I chose not to worry about DD. Now, if it leans at all, it’s imperceptible.
Partway into that winter, my boss turned in her notice. She announced it to us and added they were selling their house and moving away. After she worked the specified amount of time, we were left without anyone to tell us what to do. The CFO had her hands full with her job. She was willing to work out the big problems but we had to take care of the little mundane things ourselves.
I asked to see the job description and none of the current employees were qualified to move up and that included me. We all sat back to see what would happen. Each of us knew the duties we were expected to complete each day and the office hummed along with no one at the helm. We wondered why we needed someone to boss us and I had the temerity to ask. I was told there had to be a person for us to go to in the chain of command between us and administration. Okay, but who would it be?
Weeks went by and nothing seemed to change. I saw a few of the resumes that came in and some were better than others. One was done on a rich heavy bond with pictures of himself and his family. At the far end of the spectrum, crudely crafted ones with misspelled words, grammatical errors and obvious “padding” came folded little enough to be shoved into a small envelope. Those were laid aside without a second look. It seemed applicants were coming out of the woodwork. How on earth did so many people find out about an opening in such a remote part of the world?
One day, the CFO came over to introduce us to our new manager. She was shorter than I am (5’3″) and said she had come from a large hospital system in a city 100 miles (more or less) away. The CFO was enthused about the woman’s abilities and, after a brief orientation, left her with us. What were we supposed to do with her?
She moved into her office and made herself at home. One of her first acts as manager was to hire a new biller. She was a tall woman with a head full of dark red hair. Even though they claimed to not know each other in their lives previous to that, it appeared there was some familiarity. At least it was enough to make us wonder.
Our previous manager knew all of us well enough she could trust us to do our jobs. This manager was “hands on”. Nothing happened she didn’t know about. If there had been a popularity contest, she wouldn’t have won. She and I got along okay but that wasn’t true of everyone. It was going to be a long haul.