I was born during the summer of 1965 at the Anderson Memorial Hospital in Anderson, South Carolina. All of my surviving children were born there, too.
I was born a month early. My mama and her also-pregnant, oldest sister were taking a walk and my mama fell into a hole, which put her into labor. I can imagine they were quite the sight, one pregnant woman in a hole with another one trying to pull her out!
Aside from my mama, me, and the nurses, the only other person in attendance at my birth was Dr. Herbert Blake. My aunt was at the hospital with my mama, but no one was allowed in the delivery room back then other than the mother and medical personnel, not even daddies. As I understand it, my daddy wasn’t at the hospital for the births of any of his children. Times were different back then.
I weighed 6 pounds 2 ounces when I was born, contrasted with my own firstborn who weighed in at 8 pounds 8 ounces. My mama fought during the process and because of this, her blood pressure went through the roof and she passed out. I was born at 9:55pm on a Wednesday night. When mama was conscious again, she was afraid that I was still in there and that she wasn’t done yet. My aunt let her know that I had been born, much to her relief.
I had little, if any, hair when I was born. I was bald for so long, people would tease my mama and ask her, “When are you taking him for a haircut?” even though they were aware that I was a little girl. Finally, I got hair, and it was all curls. My daddy said that it was so curly that you couldn’t tell which end of my hair was attached to my head. That may be an exaggeration, but it was pretty curly. It was auburn, a little redder at times than others. Like most white babies, I was born with blue eyes, but ultimately they turned brown. They have golden flecks in them.
I wasn’t a twin, but there was a little boy baby born the same day that I was. Mama saw him in the nursery and thought we could have been twins. Really, I think that she had wished he was her baby instead of me. So, somewhere out there is a male me. My younger brothers are twins and our family has a rich history of twins. I was standing behind the wrong door when twins were passed out and never had them. I think that it would have been an exhaustingly fun adventure, though!