Cara\'s Story Book Length

This may be longer than what you want to or have time to read... but I needed to write it so I did... actually I wrote it over time... Its for me... its for my family... Most of all its for my daughter Cara. About Cara by her Mama Cara's Birth Day The night before I was as nervous as the proverbial cat on a hot tin roof... couldn't sleep... I tried a couple of times but finally gave up around 3am... Even though I'd washed her clothes months before I hand washed a bunch of her little outfits and hung them on the line... Of course at that point they were just little sleepers and stuff as I didn't know if I was having a girl or a boy... I kind of thought it would be a boy... which was fine... I had a name for him... Stephen Paul... but oh inside my heart I really wanted a girl... Cara's dad and I split up when I was about 4 1/2 months pregnant... I wanted a girl to be like my best friend someday... because I thought as far as men were concerned that part of my life was over... ah the comedy and the tragedy of youth is that we think everything is going to be that way forever... I am seriously amused at my stupidity... Ok so... I didn't even notice it but I was going to the bathroom a lot... I was staying at my mom and stepdad's... They got up around 5am... I heard mama telling my stepdad that I'd been going to the bathroom about every 30 minutes... Dad said he figured he'd be a grandpa by the time he got off work that evening... I had a doctor's appt for 9am that morning... Around 8am I started feeling some pressure... Dr's visit... he tells me to go home and keep timing the pains... Mom and I stopped for breakfast but I couldn't get comfortable and didn't feel much like eating... so mama finished eating and we went home. We were playing dominoes... a game called moon... and the pains were coming closer together... around 3pm... we head for the hospital... At the hospital I nearly collapsed at the second set of double doors when a pain hit me that almost brought me to my knees... Hang on... make it into the hospital and to the door of the admitting office... No one's there... look up and down the hall... no one... and oh damn... here's another one of those pains.... suddenly a nurse comes running with a wheel chair... I guess she'd been around women in labor because she just told me to get in the chair we were heading to the labor room... So they got me up there... and things slowed down a little... A nurse came to shave me... I told her that unlike how a man moves his chin and mouth and all when he shaves...I couldn't move things down there like that... I'd read that in a story a woman wrote in for Reader's Digest a year or so before and had been dying to use it... Even in the midst of labor I can't stop cracking jokes.... then an enema... my first one ever... uh... no jokes yall... So they get me all prepped and comfortable.. not...... there is no comfortable in labor... well not back then... I was afraid of spinals and coddles and they didn't do the epidurals back then... anyway... as comfortable as was possible... and we wait... and time the pains... and wait... and time the pains... and every so often the doctor comes in... and when he does that finger sweep check... it doesn't matter if I had just finished a pain its going to bring on another one... oh ouch... damn damn damn.... In the midst of all this I notice that the lady who is my roommate and I are performing a comic symphony.... When she has a pain... she screams ay yi yi yi yi.... me... having no class at all... I just scream...... OOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO and it just so happened that our pains seemed to be synchronized to follow one after the other... and again... even in the midst of this my comic sense is alerted... and I tell mama that someday I will tell my baby about his/her birth day symphony.... Finally a few minutes before 3am the doctor comes in and tortures me again... He said that we still had several hours to go and walks out the door... He's hardly out the door before I tell mama that I think the baby is coming... she tells me that the doctor just left and said I had several hours in a rather tired voice... I know though... this pressure and pain is so instense and I tell mama please to look for herself and so after a minute or so she does... and as she raises the sheet my water breaks and the baby's head is pressing through... Its 3am mama told me as she stepped into the hall she noticed the clock on the wall... the nurses come running... they bring me to the delivery room and hurriedly move me from the bed to the table... We had planned on using ether for the birth but she was born before they got a chance to give it to me... and then I didn't want it... the baby was here... what for? but the doctor said I should because the placenta still needed to be delivered... so they knocked me out... and I always did resent those hours I was out and didn't get to see my baby... I'm sure they must have told me I had had a baby girl... but I don't remember it... but it must have lodged in my brain because I knew before they brought her to me I had a baby girl... my Cara... Its hard to find the words to tell you about my daughter. To me she was one of the greatest things that ever happened. I remember a few days after I brought her home from the hospital I was holding her. My heart was so full of love. I held her up and I thanked God for the gift he had given me. I still thank God for all the time we did have. I will never be able to say that it doesn't make me sad that she died much too soon. What story should I start with. There are so many. I called her my little cuddle bum. I used to hold her in the evenings while her dad was at work for hours. I'd hold her and love her for awhile then I'd put her in her play pen. We lived in a small one bedroom apartment and so she was always near me. I would put her down and do some housework. Then I'd pick her up and we'd watch TV for a bit... then it was back to the housework... then cuddle time... I didn't get much else done, but to be honest I wasn't worried about it. I was just enjoying my precious child. I got pregnant with my son John when Cara was 5 months old. I was somewhat nervous at the time wondering if I'd do well with two children so close together. John arrived on November 11, 1977 and from the start Cara adored her baby brother. I don't think he much appreciated being her baby brother... He caught up to her fast in size and definitely considered himself the man... *Smile* He knows though how she loved him and would often worry more about his needs than her own. As for having two children, there was just that much more love. I enjoyed a whole round of new firsts and it was and is wonderful. I'll never forget when I went to register Cara for school. I filled out some paperwork and was told that Cara had an immunization she needed and then she'd be all set to start school. While I'd been getting things set up Cara had been playing in a corner, seemingly oblivious to what was going on. I found out how wrong I was about that. When we walked out the big doors of the school, I reached down to take her hand like I'd always done and she silently but with an undeniable determination pulled her hand down and proceeded down the steps... a girl getting ready to go to school was surely much too big to have mama holding her hand... It was a proud moment although tinged with a tiny sense of loss... Cara was such a happy child. Teachers and staff at Elk Creek Elementary called her Ms Sunshine. She was so pretty. Her golden hair and blue eyes so trusting and so full of love for everyone. Cara worked hard and did well in kindergarden and first grade. The first couple of weeks of second grade were a bit frightening. Cara didn't like her new teacher! Every day she came home with new horror stories. I was in a bit of a quandry about how to handle it. I finally decided I needed to help Cara try to work on getting along with Ms Suitt. I told her she should give Ms Suitt a chance and get to know her. I told her all the things I could think of that maybe she could do to get along with her teacher. Finally I told her if the teacher was as bad as she was saying she should work very hard on her schoolwork or she might fail and she'd be stuck with Ms Suitt for another year. By the time the school year ended she loved Ms Suitt so much that she was threatening to fail on purpose so that she could be in Ms Suitt's class for another year. Oh my!!! In third grade I went to a parent teacher conference for Cara. The teacher was really nice, talking about how sweet Cara was, and how good she was doing, and all that stuff. Then she said, "there's just one little problem... she talks too much.... " we're a talky family... so it rather amused me... I managed to keep a straight face as I looked surprised and said, "Hmmm I can't imagine where she got that." I believe there may have been a laugh hiding in my eyes as the teacher said no more... I guess I could have been more supportive but hey I loved my chatter box... I enjoyed the sounds of her prattling on.... I remember one evening I picked Cara and John up after work at day care and we went home. I was working on putting supper together and Cara was there beside me swinging on the cabinet door... which she wasn't supposed to be doing... and then I noticed what she was saying... in a sing song voice she's swinging back and forth on the cabinet singing butt, butt, butt, butt, butt, butt.... I told her that she could quit both the swinging on the cabinet door and showing off her first cuss word.... oh but I was amused... Children are such fun. Well Cara didn't drop out of school after 3rd grade so I guess its time to add some more... *Smile* Cara wanted very much for people to like her... i worried at times that she worried too much about it... She really put herself out to have people to like her... and it did cause her a lot of pain in her life... How do you raise a child that is kind and generous to others... but has the strength and the confidence to take care of themselves first... I don't know... I had the same problem in my life... luckily as I'm getting older I have Rhett Butler moments... it helps... Anyway Cara continued on through her school years a ray of light in our home and at school... At the 6th grade award ceremonies she walked across the stage so many times I was about to burst with pride... She got awards for 4H club, library assistant, top library assistant, attendance, grades, something I can't remember what it was for to do with her work at the snack stand... Mr Percy who was the school custodian was in charge of the children working in the snack stand... He was at the funeral home when Cara died and he seemed sincerely sad about what had happened to her... A lot of her friends had drifted away and there weren't a whole lot of young people there... In a way I resented that but that's how it was... Oh well back to Cara... Seventh grade was an abrupt change for Cara and therefore for our family... A friend on Daily Strength is a blond... poor child... I hope she doesn't get mad at me... she probably won't... blonds have to be tough with all the jokes we throw at them... So this is part of a message I sent her... and then I added some more because I was enjoying remembering Cara... As my son said on her memorial page... she had something about her that just lit up a room... The light has not gone out... In my heart I see her and the light still shines... and I want you all to bask in the glow... To all the blonds... I truly would have liked to be a blond... I went to a wig shop once and tried on some blond wigs.... ugh... made my face look doughy... Anyway the reason for this explanation is... teasing Cara about being blond... We had to keep her ego in check... *Smile* Cara was a little blond haired blue eyed angel... and we adored her... I thought she was the prettiest child this side of heaven... so as she got a little older around 5 or 6 she got a little smug... now in our family... that won't do... we're gonna bug you... she'd say things... like don't you wish you were blonds to me and my mom... stuff like that... we'd tell her... oh no... no way... we don't want that ugly old yaller hair... we'd all laugh because she knew very well we thought she was the cat's meow... when she was in her teens I used to tease her by collecting blond jokes... Whenever other people would tell her blond jokes... she'd just laugh and tell them she probably knew more blond jokes than they did... that her mother collected them... We always razzed each other and it was just a part of who we are... she got me one time... she asked me if I knew how a brunette turned on the light after sex... well I didn't... it was her pleasure to enlighten me... They open the car door... irreverent... a little off center... oh yeah.... reminds me of a joke a comedian made recently... He said that what most people miss about dysfunctional families... is the word fun is in it... so yeay we're a little crazy at times... During her teens Cara discovered guys... I saw it happening... I was a bit nervous but she was so beautiful and natural it was a pleasure to see her shine... She wasn't allowed to date but she had a new "boyfriend" every couple of weeks for awhile... I really have to thank the boys moms... they may want to shoot me... but some of the names made great fodder for our family's wacky sense of humor... I mean... you think about it... I'm a Gone With The Wind fan... So when Cara came home and announced that her new "forever" love's name was Ashley.... oh yeah... Yeah you really got to love a girl who will gift you with a boyfriend named Ashley... Ashley... Oh Ashley... heavy on the southern drawl yall.......   and then there was one named Cy.... uh.... dying fading away voice whisper cy.. sigh... one of my favorites was Brandon... him and another boy rode several miles on their bicycles to the house so that Brandon could see Cara on Saturday as he didn't think he'd make it till Monday... *Smile* Oh that child had the prettiest dark blue eyes I ever saw... I told Cara to keep Brandon as I wanted my grandchildren to inherit his blue eyes... alas... the blue eyes weren't enough and he was soon out of the picture... When Cara was finally allowed to date she met Ben and he was pretty much the only serious boyfriend she had before they ended up expecting a baby and moving in together when she was 17... To be blunt I fought it... but the police said that by the time the court system did whatever they had to do to allow me to force her to come home... she'd be 18... so I had to accept it... We came to love Ben very much and we still do... Their marriage had gone way out of kilter in the last few years... Ben thinks maybe its because Cara didn't get to have the lifestyle a lot of young girls did... the dating I mean real dating and making up and breaking up with several young men... she met him... they became a couple... she got pregnant... dropped out of school her senior year... became a mom and then a wife... obviously no senior proms... It really no longer matters... Today I'm very glad that Ben always loved Cara and that they were still married when she died... Its selfish... I know Ben has lived through some really awful times... but I'm grateful for how much he loved my child... and I love him... Cara used to fuss... said I loved Ben more than I loved her... not true... but I do love him very much... He's not a child of my body... but he is a child of my heart.... Cara has visited me and Ben several times since her passing and I know it is a comfort to him as it is to me... Thank you Cara... Love you honey for always... Mama