Mary Panza

My niece had her baby this morning. She gave birth to a wonderful baby girl. Everyone is happy and healthy. God bless. Here is what happened when I got to the hospital:

First and foremost I was forbidden to be within 10 miles of the hospital while the birth was happening. That was fine by me. I made pot roast last night for 3b and of course, a totally separate dinner for my girl. She says that I cook a few things well but won’t try anything off the grid. Again, that is fine by me. My niece labored well into the night and gave birth at 3:47am. Not a problem that I wasn’t there as I was asleep until I got the text from my sister around 4:30. I have been up ever since.

I promised my girl on the day the baby was born I would take her out of school early and we would go see the baby. I pick her up an hour before her school day ends and we head out. Prior to this, as I was leaving work I call to see if anyone needs anything.

Me: Does anyone want anything. I was going to stop for coffees.

MS2: No we are fine.

Me: OK. I will be up in an hour

MS2: Hang on; (in a loud voice to talk over the baby crying) DO YOU WANT ANYTHING? WHAT? OK. Yeah, I want a sugar free vanilla latte and she wants a large tea light and sweet.

Me: Anything else?

MS2: ANYTHING ELSE? WHAT? No. You got that right? I want a sugar free vanilla latte and a large hot tea, light and sweet.

Me: Yes, I got it the first time.

MS2: Don’t be a bitch Mary Beth. This is a special day.

That is typical of me and my sister. If one of us is not in total agreement with the other it automatically makes the one that disagrees is a bitch. Don’t judge it. We say what we feel and always let the chips fall where they may. It is a very South Troy thing.

So I finally get to the hospital after arguing with my girl in the Dunkin Donuts drive thru. We fought over a donut. Anyways, I get there and we can’t go in because my niece is meeting with the lactation consultant. We wait. My sister and I drink coffee and my girl asks the same question over and over again.

My Girl: Ma, WHEN CAN I SEE THE BABY????

Me: I don’t know.

Three seconds later.

My Girl: Ma, do you think they are done yet?

Seven year olds are not famous for patience. Finally, we go in. Not for nothing, my niece looked beautiful. Like nothing happened. Amazing. The baby is the spitting image of her proud papa. My sister picked up the baby and I immediately took the baby from my sister. My niece told me, in a loud voice, to watch her head. I told her, in a loud voice, to kiss my ass. We take the photos. Ten minutes later the papa’s parents come in and his mother takes the baby from me. I concede to keep the peace and because it is the right thing to do. I begin to go through the Cookie Factory bags to see what was up. Everything is quiet. For a moment, it is like we are not loud ethnic stereotypes. Then papa’s parents leave and one of my nephews and my brother come in. Then we start arguing about where to go to dinner. I always want Red Front. My brother wanted Plum Blossom and told me I really didn’t have a choice since he was paying and that I have never sprung for a check in my life and I probably still have my christening money. He was correct on all three counts. Why should I pay, I tell him? I’m the youngest and you and my sister should being taking care of me. My niece pipes up and says that she can’t believe no one brought her Red Front or Plum Blossom because in case anyone forgot, SHE JUST HAD A BABY!!! I yell that I asked her if she wanted anything and she said freaking tea. Now I am supposed to be a psychic. This all goes on loudly and the baby sleeps like a champ. We are all impressed, loudly. We went to Red Front. I didn’t pay.

It sounds like we are crazy and we are. It sounds like we fight all the time and we do. It also should sound like we love each other because that is the truth. As my great niece spends her first full night on planet earth, this is how we love her. Loud.