Watch Out for Crazy People!

A fan site for Lisa Freedman

The story of Lisa’s birth

Spring does not come easily in Nova Scotia. There was a huge snow storm on Easter Sunday and your grandmother had to drive all the way around New Brunswick to get to us. Thank God she did because she was taking all our “stuff” home so we could bring you home by plane. We waited through my due date and days beyond, but on Saturday morning May 4th there was no mistaking the “lift me out of bed and send me through the ceiling” pain. Today, would be the day I thought and then I can get out of this town and get home with my baby. I really wanted a girl and had known you would be a girl since I had a dream a couple of months before . . .and of course you were a girl and you would be named Elizabeth but called “Lisa” as a nickname. I wasn’t sure that “Lisa,” which was a very popular name then would sound appropriate for a grownup. I didn’t want to leave you with a “Bambi” kind of name. Okay, I was wrong, but it made your grandmother and Aunt really happy too.

When I got to the hospital, I was put in the four bed maternity ward because the delivery room was already occupied by a very unhappy woman who was screaming her brains out. I hadn’t had any childbirth classes, but I did have a feeling that this tie up did not bode well. However, I was eighteen, in great physical shape so I was feeling pretty good and just glad that the waiting was over. Pains progressed but, the screaming on the other side of the wall did not let up. Then around noon when I was really cooking, the nurse came in and gave me a shot to slow my labor down because the delivery room was not available yet. After x-rays, they finally realized the baby needed to be turned for the poor girl to deliver. Still, I was thankful for the break, but I was still hoping that poor lady would have her baby. Around four the pains started again and they did not slow down again. I was dying to get into the delivery room because I knew I would get some relief from the pain and be more comfortable. The turning was eventually completed and the poor girl luckily had a healthy baby boy (9lbs 6ozs).

Finally around 6:30pm they wheeled me into the delivery room and I knew this was going to get better real soon . . . Well, the secret of the delivery room was finally fully revealed, . . . delivery in Canada in 1963 consisted of putting me on a very hard and uncomfortable table and wishing me luck. Eventually, a very nice older nurse started to give me some tips on breathing and relaxing. My only thought was “you relax, Lady” but Mom had told me that annoying the nurses would make it harder on me and I decided that I didn’t need any more problems. Around quarter to 8, I started to push. The nurses pointed this out to the doctor, but he said I didn’t really need to push so he was going for a coffee. About 10 minutes later, the nurses were screaming down the hall for the coffee sipping doctor who made it back just in time to catch you on the way out. You were officially born at 8:05pm and you started to yell as soon as you came out. The nurses were impressed that you spontaneously breathed and cried without any assistance. Now that I know you a lot better, I’m sure you were actually highly annoyed and saying, “Who the hell stopped my labor work this afternoon?”