Sunday, November 29, 2009

Twenty Six.

For some people, birthdays are a big deal. Another year usually means another milestone. At age thirteen you're an official teen... sixteen: driving... eighteen: an official adult... fifty: officially an old timer. Nintey. 100. You get the picture.

But for me and my mom, none of my birthdays are as big a deal as my very first one.

This year, to commemorate that special day so long ago, I asked my mom to write my story... my birthday story. (Thanks mom, love you, you're the best!) It's a personal story (obviously since it involves me) but it's a pretty cool story. Uncut, uncensored, and unrated. (And seeing as how my mom wrote it, that means it's probably rated PG.)

Bart Nathan Gadbury - born November 28, 1983
This is one of those stories that is full of joy, sadness, anxiousness, worry and fear. But most of all, it’s a story of love.

Our second child, wasn’t due until March 7, 1984. We were so excited to be expecting our second child. We wanted another child, and he was on the way! However, unknown to us, this child was one of those kids who wanted to be first, be great, and make an entrance!

In November of 1983, things with my pregnancy were progressing well. I was getting sufficiently plump and sassy. But, for some unknown reason, my water broke and I was only at 27 weeks. Normal delivery is at 40-42 weeks. Once your water breaks, you are pretty much committed to having the baby, but being young, I really did not comprehend the seriousness of it all. I just figured, “oh well, we’ll go to the hospital, and they’ll just stop the contractions and I’ll go home and everything will progress as usual.” I was so wrong.

Arriving at the hospital in Moore, I was told I would be staying. I was to remain bedfast. They thought I had a condition called, “Placenta Previa”.

Since my water had broken, they were afraid of an infection that would affect me and the baby. So, I was to be in bed. Period. End of discussion.
The whole point of me staying in bed was to try to keep the baby inside of me for as long as possible, so that his lungs could develop more. (I say ‘he’. We did not know if we were having a boy or girl at this point.)
It was very difficult to be away from Lyle and Bret. Bret himself was still just a baby. I also had fear that they would forget about me and not need me anymore. I cried a lot.
I made it for 8 days. Long days. Soap opera days. (There was absolutely nothing else on TV!) Bret was being taken care of by my Mom and also by Kelly Bittle. I knew he was in good hands. But I just wanted to be home!
I missed Thanksgiving that year. Everyone was at my Mom’s. Dave and his little family, Mom, Dad, Aunt Mary, Grandma Hogg, Grandma Stroud, Lyle and Bret. I felt a little lonely, but grateful that our baby was still staying put. I still had no idea what really lie ahead for the both of us.
The morning of the 8th day, Monday November 28th, things began to change and to change fast. I went into labor. I was scared. I had a fever, and the chance for infection was not good for me or the baby. But no one was really telling me anything. At about noon, my contractions were about 4 minutes apart. The next thing I knew, I was in an ambulance headed for Mercy Medical Center in Oklahoma City. This baby was coming! Ready or not. I heard the phrase, “They have a great NIC Unit. That will be the best place for this baby to be born.” My thought was, “What does that mean? Surely I’m not going to have this baby?!”
The ambulance ride was extremely bumpy. I remember distinctly that I was very uncomfortable, and I wanted it to stop! I’m pretty sure I conveyed that to them once or twice! I was in total misery and somewhat delirious because of the fever and infection.
Arriving at the hospital, I was taken and monitored very quickly. “Get her to X-Ray and Ultrasound, let’s verify placenta privea.”
In the meantime, they are trying to find Lyle. He’s at work on some remote site many many miles away! There were no cell phones back then. He would have to be physically found!
I became more and more alarmed, and as they started giving choices and options, I can really only remember that I just wanted it to be over.

And where was Lyle???? Because of the infection, I was becoming more and more ‘out of it.’ My temperature was 105 degrees!
They finally found Lyle. Thank Heavens. I was really really scared now and I needed him to be there! I prayed he would make it to the hospital in time.

The ultrasound showed no placenta privea, but the baby was breech, (feet first). This is not a good thing. This would mean I could not have him normal delivery and would have to have a C-section. Major surgery. This is not something I had planned! And I was tired and so exhausted and so frightened for my baby. Would he live? I had never considered that we were both in jeopardy. I was only worried about my baby.
Lyle made it to the hospital in time. He had to come from a long way away, but I really don’t remember much more from this point on.

My baby boy was born 4:53 p.m. that day. 2 lbs 2 oz. And 14 inches long.

I did not get to hold him, cuddle him, whisper, “I love you”. I remember nothing.

Meanwhile, while they are trying to get my infection under control, and to get our baby boy to the Neonatal unit, family were waiting in the waiting room.

My Mother told me she was so upset when they wheeled our baby boy past them in the waiting room, announcing, “Mr. Gadbury, you have a baby boy!”. Mom’s thinking was that here we have a premature baby, and you’re announcing the birth like it’s Christmas! Is he going to make it? What are his chances? He only weighs 2 lbs!

All were amazed.
I was very ill. I had to have a blood transfusion and be on powerful anti-biotics plus pain shots, I was in a fog for the next few days. I really didn’t even know I had had my baby!
Meanwhile, our son was doing well. The Doctor later explained to me that my “infection had actually been beneficial to the baby. It had helped him to be more strong. He was breathing on his own…he’d be in the hospital at least 10 weeks. He has a good chance to make it”.
Really! How grateful I was. I still did not really realize what lie ahead for us both.
I actually didn’t see Bart the day he was born. I don’t even know if it was the next day! But, When I saw him, I went into shock. I felt a loss, I cannot explain it. Is this really my son? Is he going to make it? He is so small, so helpless. And all these nurses and doctors are taking care of him! Not me! The weight of it all hit like a ton of bricks.
The Doctors came to see me. They asked, “are you going to nurse your baby?” I had no idea how to reply to this question. He could not nurse. He was too weak and too small, but I could supply the milk and they would feed him through a tube that would go straight to his tummy. (Gavauge)
Was I strong enough? Mentally, physically, emotionally to supply milk? I didn’t think so, and so I told them ‘no.’

I started on a medication that stops milk production. But after I became aware of ALL the details regarding Bart, I knew I NEEDED to do this for him. It was truly the only thing I COULD do for him. I couldn’t hold him, love him, or protect him. He was ill. His lungs had not developed enough, he had apnea ( he would suddenly stop breathing) and his heart duct had not closed at birth, which meant he would have to have surgery. (PDAL, Dec 7, 1983. note from journal: “Bart, your father and I have just come home from the hospital. You had heart surgery this morning at 7:00 a.m. and you’ve done well. It’s been hard for us to see you so little, to go through all of this. You are quite the fella. We love you.” ) I was absolutely helpless! I could not even hold him. That is a cruel and hard thing to bear when you’ve just had a baby. He needed ME, his MOM and they wouldn’t let me even hold him.
I had already started on the medication to stop milk production, but I decided I wanted to try to provide milk for him anyway. And this story is truly a miracle. I was not only able to provide milk for Bart, but I had AMPLE milk. Tons of it, and it was Good quality milk. Very rich. It was the only thing I could do for Bart and I was truly blessed to be able to do this ONE SOLITARY thing.
Every ounce of my being willed him to make it, to be strong. I loved him so. He needed me, and I wanted him to feel my love and my concern. How I wished I could care for him instead of the nurses and doctors! He needed them. He needed me. He could not have both.

Providing the milk was not fun, but I found it to be easy. This will embarrass Bart, but oh well. I had to rent an electric breast pump. I felt like Bessy the cow! I never had ANY trouble. It was truly a miracle. In fact, I had frozen so much of the milk, that when Bart finally did come home, I had milk for him for a very long time. I know in my heart that this is what made him strong, and able to grow and overcome his obstacles.
Bart dropped in weight to 1 lb 15 oz for a brief time. That was scary. He had to stay in the hospital for 3 months, the rest of his gestation period.
The nursery smelled funny. I hated that smell. There were lots of sick babies there. I remember a baby in an incubator next to Bart and that his mother could not provide milk for him. I asked if I could since I had so much, but for unclear reasons, they told me no. The baby died. I was very sad and it has affected me to this very day.
We were actually able to hold Bart when he was 3 weeks old. It seemed so unkind of them to not let us hold him previous to this, but I know that it had to be that way. I cannot explain in human terms how I felt that evening when we got to hold Bart for the first time. I was scared. I felt joy! I felt pure love. I felt peace. I felt deep gratitude. I didn’t want to give him back to the nurse. He made little gurgle noises. I loved holding him.
I have a picture of that moment. Not only in my scrapbook, but in my heart. He was so small. He had to have oxygen held up to his face. But he was finally mine!

He was so small, and had tubes and wires around him. But it was wonderful to finally hold my son! How young and naïve I was. How unprepared.

Bart was so small that Lyle’s wedding band fit over Bart’s hand. Diapers were too large so he laid under the lights in his bassinet/incubator naked. This was not how it was supposed to be!

Journal entry - 12/10/1983 “Your grandma and grandpa Harnish came up to see you tonight. I think it upset them to see all the wires and tubes you’ve got hooked up to you. You looked tired tonight.

I’m sure it is your way of recuperating from surgery. You’re a special boy, I know that for sure. Your father and I want you to come home with us soon.”
This was a difficult time. Not just because our baby was in a hospital 50 miles away from us. That was trial enough….


• Bret was 2 years old and needed his mom.

• My grandma Hogg and Great Grandma Stroud were living with my parents and were of ill health, and would die while Bart was in the hospital

Journal entry: “Your grandma Hogg died this week. She was very ill. She never got to see you or hold you, but she loved you very much. She lit a candle for you almost every single day. It was her way of praying for you.” …”Grandma Stroud passed away just 10 days after grandma Hogg. It’s been very hard for me because I loved them very much. They were both great ladies. You’ve had quite a spell yourself. You were doing so well, and then decided to pull some breathing problems on us. Your father and grandpa Harnish gave you a blessing today. We leave it in the Lord’s hands. Please get better. We want you home with us. You’re too far away. I love you.”

• Lyle’s business was not doing well because of the economy crunch in Oklahoma.

• My brother David’s wife, left him alone with 2 children to take care of.

• My brother Jay had had some severe trials on his mission

• We were in the middle of building a house we would never live in

• My parents were having severe marital and financial problems

• And Bart was 50 miles away in Oklahoma City. Traveling daily was difficult.

I often wonder how in the world I did it. But I know how I did it. I relied on the Lord. He indeed carried me, and blessed our little son.
Early on, when I knew that this baby boy of ours was very ill, and had so much to overcome, I experienced a great peace. I knew that Bart would make it. I knew he would be whole. (So many preemies suffer their whole lives with blindness, deafness, learning disabilities, etc.)

But I knew he would come home to us. I thank God for that peace. It carried me through a most difficult time.
Journal entry: 10 weeks old: “ you were transferred to Norman Hospital so you could be closer to us. I can now come see you 2 or 3 times a day. It’s wonderful! Your apnea problem has not gone away, but I know of a surety that when your father gave you a blessing today, that it would be the end of this problem. The Holy Ghost witnessed it to me, as I knew it when I requested the blessing. You need to be home with us. And you will be soon!”
And he did make it! Bart came home to us February 27th. No more apnea. He did not even need a monitor when he came home. What a relief, what a blessing. We both had to adjust. Being away from each other had taken a toll, but he was home. It was where he belonged. He had won the fight, and what a fight it was. It was indeed the fight of his life.
Journal entry: “You are home! What a blessing it is! And I know it’s through your fathers righteous living and bearing of his Priesthood, not to mention our faith, and the faith of many many others!”
A few notes about Bart’s first few months at home:
He slept a lot. I guess not much has changed . :)
When he was blessed as an infant at church, by his father, these are a few things that were said:

• That Bart would have the strength and will power to pull through this delicate situation that he was in

• That he has 2 parents who love him and will raise you in the church

• That he will be a binding force for his family
His first words were da-da (traitor!)
His favorite toy – measuring spoons

His favorite playmate was Bret. He would just giggle and belly laugh when he was with Bret.

Journal entry at 7 months: You are getting cuter and more alert everyday. You suck your thumb or index finger whenever you sleep or need some extra comfort. You eat well. You love fruits and vegetables, cereal and fruit juice. You reach for objects, you roll over and hold your head up really well. You love to be talked to. You have a smile that lights up your whole face. You are so cute!”
You loved peek a boo and to dance with mom.
Journal entry at 10 months: “ Bart, you’re such a cutie! You entertain yourself quite a bit, and you love it when Bret plays with you. You just belly laugh!”
You loved any kind of hat!
At one year old you had more than doubled your height to 29.75 inches and you weighed 17 lb 4 oz.
Journal entry at 1 year: “If you can survive Bret, you’ll survive anything. He sits on you, pokes, pushes, lays and any other torture he can think of. You don’t fuss too much about it, but occasionally you get fed up with him, and then you do let us know about it. You show no mercy to the dog or cat, you get a hand full of hair and pull! When you smile, your wrinkle your nose and squint your eyes and snort! You’re a total mess when you eat, but you sure have fun.”
Journal entry at 18 months: “You’re a mad-man on legs. You are anywhere and everywhere. You’re a flirt and you love hats! If you go outside we really have to watch you cos’ you move fast!”

Journal entry at age 2: “You get frustrated very easily, mostly because of your older brother. You argue a lot over toys. I try not to intercede too often. You need to learn love, compassion and sharing for each other. You love to wrestle with Bret, dad or whoever will get down on the floor with you. You’re pretty tough! You sure give good hugs.”

Journal entry at age 2 ½ “ You aren’t real sure what to think of baby Blake. You don’t like it when he cries, and don’t like it when Mom feeds him. I suppose its because you’re not the ‘baby’ anymore.

But you really aren’t. You’ve gotten to be such a big boy now. You’re getting more and more independent. You have the nicest smile.”
Journal entry at age 3: “You haven’t quite figured out how to outsmart Bret yet. He gets the best of you, but I have a feeling that he better watch out in a few years, cos’ you’re going to ‘repay’ him in full! You still have a great smile and fun laugh!”

Journal entry at age 4: “You absolutely love “JOY SCHOOL”. 8 of your friends from church all go too! It’s been good for you to have your ‘own’ school. You’re getting so big. Hard to believe you were ever so tiny. You ride your 2 wheeler with training wheels – you keep up with the bigger kids pretty well. You an Alisa have become inseparable. You like to play at each others’ house. You’ve fallen off the top bunk several times now, so we had to put you back on the bottom. You would hit with such a ‘thud’ that it would sound like the house was falling in! It’s a good thing you have a hard head!”

Journal entry at age 5: ‘You are excited about kindergarten. I think it helps you feel ‘older’ like Bret. Your best friend is Tommy Davidson and if you had it your way you’d live at his house. He has a trampoline and you like to jump on it. You both learned to ride 2 wheelers on the same day. You have a great smile with twinkly eyes. You are a good helper.”

Journal entry at age 6: “ What a boy you’ve grown to be. You’re go go go. No time for mom and dad. You love to ride your bike. And you have a great imagination. You’ve done well in school and you sleep well at night. You’re exhausted! You love jigsaw puzzles. You are good at them.”
Journal entry at age 8: “You are a great student. Not only that, you are a sweet guy. You care about others, and their feelings. That is a wonderful quality. You are terrific at the piano and you enjoy cub scouts. You and your 2 brothers have your share of arguments but you like to be with them. Someday you’ll really wamp on Bret, so he better watch out~”

Thursday, November 19, 2009

Bears. Beets. Battlestar Galactica.

Bart: We’re going into business together, right?

Jason: Sure. What type of business?

Bart: Oh… I don’t know. I thought you had that part figured out. You’re the brawn and the brain and the billfold… I’m just the pretty face you’re gonna slap on billboards.

Jason: I was thinking about beet farming. Do you want to be the spokesperson for a beet farm?

Bart: Everyone loves beets, right?

Jason: I think so… that’s why it’s a great idea!

Bart: You may be on to something…

J: Now we just need to learn how to farm…

B: I grew up on a ranch… but that really doesn’t help us, does it?

J: That depends. Have you ever planted anything that didn’t die within a week?

B: No. … Wait… I once planted a seed that never grew… so, technically, it never died.

J: That’s a great point and that’s enough for me to make you Chief Operations Officer!

B: Awesome! And as my first official act as Chief Operations Officer, I hereby appoint you as Lead Implementation Specialist.

J: Thank you! As my first official act as Lead Implementation Specialist, I implement a three day work week.

B: I second it. Motion for a three day work week stands. HooRah.

Date: 11-18-2009
To: COO Bart
From: LIS Jason
Re: Hot Secretary
Can we hire Megan Fox as my secretary?

All that other stuff.
Re: Hot Secretary
I’m sorry to inform you that, Miss Fox has already been hired on as the COO’s secretary (The COO... yeah, that’s me.)… And Kate Beckinsale as the COO’s personal assistant. (That’s also me.)

J: Oh. … That seems unfair.

B: You might think that at first, until you find out that I appointed Tina Fey and Ellen as your secretaries! Surprise!

J: Wait… what? No. Why?!

B: Can you say ‘funnest office in the building’?! I think you can!

J: I want hottest office in the building! Not an ugly chick and an uglier lesbo!

B: Sorry. You automatically ruled your office out of the running when you hired me as COO. I’m hot. … But don’t worry. The hot secretaries and I will come and visit often.

J: I’m resigning and starting a brussel sprouts farm.

And now... one of my favorite clips from The Office.
Bears. Beets. Battlestar Galactica.

Monday, November 16, 2009

Birthdays are Holidays

Holidays are the worst time to be single. No presents, no gifts, no parties… no meaningful snuggling by a warm fire while drinking hot cocoa and stirring things up with a spoon (and no, I’m not talking about hot cocoa anymore). Instead, you come home to an empty, undecorated room, turn on Sportscenter and drift slowly to sleep with a glass of milk. (Yeah, definitely no spoon… not even with hot cocoa….) Aaaaaand, I just realized that I celebrate a ‘holiday’ almost every, single night of my life. Yay, me.

(Did you see what I did there? A little thing called The Double Entendre.)

The other night we went to dinner with the basketball girls to celebrate a birthday. (From here on out if I ever mention the term ‘basketball girls’ or the ‘bball girls’… just know I’m referring to the BYU Women’s Basketball team. Yeah, we hang out.) Have you ever been sitting around the dinner table with your family and had someone ask, “What was the best part of your day?” Well I haven’t. Thank goodness most of my family dinners were spent in absolute silence. Occasionally there was lobbying over who gets the last scoop of potatoes, and loud, spasmodic ventilation of you-know-what… but what are you going to do with three boys?

Anyways, back to the bball girls… so we did the ‘best part of your day’ thing, with everyone taking a turn. I said, “Talking to mom about Christmas.” It got a few ooos and awes… but as the group continued listening to other ‘best day’ stories, I couldn’t help but think… That was also the worst part of my day. You see, my birthday is one month before Christmas: November 28. It’s hard for me to believe that my sweet mother could get swept up in society’s greed-filled plague of the ‘me first, give thanks second’ mode of thinking that has our whole nation going from Halloween to Christmas in a matter of 24 hours…. But she skipped right over my birthday… and went straight to Christmas.

So, I gave my mom my Christmas list… which just so happens to be my birthday list…

Do you think Jesus will mind if I open my collection of Calvin and Hobbes comic books on His birthday? Yeah, I don’t think he will either.

Oh, and one more thought… if you forget your birthday… does it still count? Or can I go on being 25 for another year?... I wonder if that’s what Greg Oden, LeBron James, and Baron Davis thought…

___G-Pa Oden_____________LeBruuun


___Boom Dizzle_______________This Guy

______ 30____________________25

Thursday, November 12, 2009

Speed is Relative

I had a converstion with a childhood friend the other day. Some of you reading this blog may remember him as my 'fake friend', as you so ruthlessly labeled him many years ago.... (Tia). So I'd like to introduce the rest of you to my best friend growing up... the coauthor and cohort of many late night shenanigans, the Stoudemire to my Nash, the Montana to my Rice, the beef to my slow cooker... well, you get the point.

Jason: Bartholomew Jay Merriweather Witherspoon III! How doth thou doeth?

Bart: Jason Winifred Ulysses Hammock Jr! The sire be-eth well. And thou?

Jason: Good morrow, sire! Venus hath lifted her skirt. Apollo hath blessed us with the removal of his blouse!

Bart: Oh blessed Apollo… thou art a magnificent beast indeed.

Jason: I have decided that you must submit a proposal to BYU to convince them to recruit more black kids. Slow white kids and fat islanders don’t win football games.

Bart: I’ve written three. And BYU does have one black kid. He’s just really slow. And I don’t think it’s the players. I think it’s the coaching. We need black coaches.

J: Do black coaches make the players faster?

B: By osmosis. (Now to myself) Or is by muscle replacement?

J: Wow! This is groundbreaking research! If I hang out with black kids, will I get faster?

B: Well... you won’t. Osmosis only works on people who haven't been labeled as ‘the slowest person alive’. Plus, you don’t know any black people.

J: I will have you know that I am Turnberry Heights Retirement Home’s reigning 100 and 200 meter champion. I won and I’m the Champ! And I live with the blackest kid alive. (Kid painted in black paint)

B: Yeah but I heard you won last year because you kicked Ms. Hill’s walker out from under her, and Mr. Johnson was disqualified for using a motorized scooter.

J: That is a matter of conjecture! I won and I’m the Champ! And even if it were true, why should she get to use a walker? She might as well be on steroids!

B: Conjecture? You’re just lucky Fat Harold sat in front of the camera right as it happened. Otherwise your medals would have been stripped.

J: Don’t you mean striped?

B: No, the medals are already striped… your striped medals would have been stripped.

J: If it can’t be proven, it didn’t happen! I won and I’m the Champ!

B: And still slow.

Friday, November 6, 2009

Just Watch

Dearest Andre',

Earlier this week, you said the Celtics weren't going to lose one game all season. You said the Celtics were going to beat the Suns. You said the Celtics were going to be 6-0. You said I remind you of Derek Fisher. You also said that Haley Hall could beat me in a three point competition. (Hmmm, maybe that was Ryan...) I had to draw the line somewhere.

So to you I say: just watch.

Where was Paul Pierce when Boston needed him? Where was 'the most clutch player in the NBA' as you call him? Where was the 'Truth'? No where to be found.... Is he hurt? Did he leave? Is he dead? Oh, no. He's playing. And missing another shot.... But where, oh where, may I ask is Steve Nash?... DAGGER! Yeah, he's just stabbing you with another CLUTCH shot, winning another game, enjoying another MVP-like season.

So the next time you decide to flaunt your Boston pride, or to strut your Celtic green, maybe you should double check to make sure number thirteen isn't coming to town.



Oh, and for the rest of you... OH EM GEE! Watch this:

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

Hate it or Love it... The Underdog's on Top...

More basketball! But this time I actually went to a game!

The Utah Jazz played the Houston Rockets in SLC on Monday, so a few friends and I (Andre, Mike, and Sheldon) made the trek up north and enjoyed a fairly good game (until the forth quarter!). My favorite play: Budinger's sweet reverse layup! (As a side note: the Jazz hardly EVER lose at home... well, used to not.)

The Jazz gave up 34 points in the forth and all the fans filed out of the arena with 4 minutes to go because the Jazz were down 20. (Poor Willie!) Afterwards we treated ourselves to 2-for-1 burgers at Iggy's.

Good news for today (Tuesday): the Suns are 4-0! They beat the Miami Heat in Miami! Here are some more delicious highlights of Steve Nash and Co.! (As a side note: Steve Nash passed Dan Majerle as the Suns all-time leading 3 point shooter with 801.)

That's just one thing I'll never get sick of! If the season ended today... the Suns would be the #1 seed in the playoffs and Steve Nash would be MVP. But unfortunately, it doesn't.

I also have to give props* to Dirk Nowitski, Nash's BFF. He scored 29 points against Utah in the 4th quarter. The forth quarter! And Utah had another 4th quarter melt down. (Poor Willie... again!)

*Props is a slang term for "accolades", "proper respect", or "just dues". It was popularized in the 1980s by rappers who shortened the term "propers", which was in turn being used as an abbreviated version of "proper respect", at least by the 1960s. The increase in this term's usage during the late 1980s and early 1990s coincided with an increasing fascination with the mafia within rap circles. Both communities have traditionally placed great emphasis on the importance of earning and giving respect.

Monday, November 2, 2009

Love Me Some Frye Sauce!

The Suns start the season out 3-0 with this win against Minnesota! Thanks to Channing Frye's 25 points and 5 rebounds... it looks like Frye will be the Most Improved Player of the year this year.

And my favorite play of the day... D-wade! He should have won MVP last year... but if he keeps doing this... he just might get it this year.

ps- let it be known that Dwyane Wade is ridicilus!! (Yes, say it like I wrote it!... Here let me help: ri-dic-i-lus!)