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Cheap Booze, Stale Cigarette Smoke and Armpit Hair

Wednesday, February 17, 2010


Sometimes watching my life unfold is like being in the audience of a dinner theater only without the stale cigarette smoke and cheap booze. The day we were waiting for Baby Diva to make her grand appearance still has me shaking my head and wondering how this family came to be and why Jerry Springer hasn't yet called.

I was sitting in the corner of the hospital room chatting online with a friend and asking myself what the medical staff must be thinking whenever they entered the room. There were seven of us there that day waiting. Jakob was sitting on a window seat looking out at a perfect view of incoming ambulances and helicopters. He was giving us blow by blow details of the injuries he saw and just what he thought had caused those injuries. In between arriving trauma patients he was frantically trying to beat his pokemon game or mess with his Papa.

Papa however spent a good deal of his time lying back playing in poker games on his blackberry. He did stop for awhile, however, to feed Karli. It's funny but I never had realized until then that all use of a pregnant woman's arms stopped while sitting in a hospital bed. So dad fed her, in between taking bites of her food for himself.

Michael was sitting with his computer laughing hysterically watching Abbot and Costello clips and trading off with Justin who was playing computer games and uttering the more than occaisional expletive.

Michelle was sitting in another corner on her computer trying not to let Jeff know that she had "misplaced" the scope of work and bid on a major contract we were getting ready to sign. In sign language, when Jeff was turned around, she was trying to get me to email her the documents she needed to finish her job and close the deal. That was until Karli asked the question that would test all bounds of friendship and sisterhood, "Michelle, will you shave my armpits?"

At that moment poker stopped, computer games stopped, Jake's head jerked out of the window and I turned on the video camera. After all, this would never happen again. It was a once in a lifetime moment and I wasn't just going to let Anna-Grace hear stories, she was going to see all of the shocking details in vivid color.

What could Michelle say? Do you ever say no to someone that's about to have a pre-term baby? Well evidentally not since her father was spoon feeding his soon to be 26 year old daughter. Michelle was trapped. There was no out. She was going to have to perform and everyone was watching.

Michelle, always the dutiful sister, found a basin, filled it with warm water and gathered the rest of her supplies: Justin's razor, hospital soap and paper towels. She sat on Karli's right side and dipped the paper towels in the warm water and Karli wriggled her, now usuable, arms out of the hospital gown. Michelle began to wipe Karli's several dayold, no shower, no razor armpits. Karli screeched "you could have warmed the water!" While they were squabbling over the temperature of the water everyone else sat open jawed at the spectacle. I guess the water warmed or Karli cooled because they continued. When Michelle completed her task on the one pit and began to move to the other side of the bed, Karli asked "Aren't you going to dry it?"

Ok, so where's the hidden camera, where's Alan Funt? Michelle got a dry towel and carefully wiped her sisters freshly shaven underarm. She thought her task was finished after shaving and drying the other side. That was when Karli asked her to apply deodorant to her baby smooth skin.

On the one hand I was thinking how sweet it was for Michelle to help her sister and that Karli felt comfortable enough to ask, on the other hand I was thinking "EEEWWWWW, these chicks are frrreaks and they're MY daughters." I guess we either did something very right, or very wrong as parents.

After that excitment died down and everyone returned to their entertainment of choice, Karli had a couple more requests. One if her dad could help her change into another gown and two, while he was doing that if Michelle could wipe her , Karlis, bottom. Not sure why, or what was there, and I wasn't going to find out, I was banishing myself from the room just as I had banished a doctor and nurse earlier in the day. Maybe they would accept my apology and, for a short time, I could hang with some people that are outside of the circle of freaks.

Watching all of this from the corner made the entire afternoon surreal. It was like a wacky experimental play with audience participation and was certainly a day for the Worley family history books.

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