Author Topic: Your life -- Stranger Than Fiction  (Read 26700 times)

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Offline andracill

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Your life -- Stranger Than Fiction
« on: August 31, 2008, 10:02 AM »
How many of us have lived through situations that would have readers saying, "No way," if they read it in a book?  Or at least, how many of us have lived things that would make a great book (not too depressing, I hope)?

Here's mine (probably my one and only, I might add):

When I was a senior in college (the first senior year, hehe), there was a huge blizzard in March.  Not that rare, but it started out strangely.  When I drove to the RTD (bus) stop in the morning, there was slush on the roads, and snow was barely falling.  I had a later class that day, getting out at 5:30.  Before that class, I noticed there were a couple of inches of snow on the ground -- but no biggie.  By the end of that class, however, snow was falling heavily.  I waited at the busstop across from campus, worried when the bus was over 30 minutes late.  A friend of mine and I had to stand in the aisle, all the way at the back of the bus.

Normally it took the bus five minutes to get out of town -- 45 minutes later, we still hadn't made it to the highway.  As we waited in traffic, I counted how many people were crammed on the bus; it was well over the limit listed on the sign at the front.

We finally made it onto the highway, only to realize that the road conditions there were even worse.  By now, the snow was falling so heavily that we could only see a few feet in front of us.  It piled up on the roads -- I'm guessing close to six inches.  Cars were spinning out of control all over the place, and soon the four-lane highway had no real lanes, at all.  We crept along, and by the time we made it within a mile and a half of the park-n-ride where my car waited, policemen stopped the bus (not hard, since we were barely moving) and said that no one would be continue on. 

I couldn't stand the idea of turning around, so I got off the bus (along with my friend).  The bus driver couldn't stop us, as we were both over 18, though he did caution us and say it wasn't a smart idea.  So we got off and struggled through drifts over two feet deep.  We walked for over a mile to reach the park-n-ride...yeah, we thought we'd be able to drive from there ;)  By the time we reached the lot, our cars were buried, and everywhere around us was a white, silent world.  It was close to 9 pm by then (I'd gotten on the bus around 6:30).  We didn't know what to do (before cell phones, btw).

About ten minutes later, a jeep slid into the lot -- it was a sheriff.  He took us to the nearest shelter (a church), where we'd have to spend the night and maybe longer, depending on the road situation.  Everyone got one phone call (why did I think I was in jail?), and when I made mine, my mom said that my dad had left, searching for me.  I told her where I was, in case he called back.  Then I told her I'd go outside the church regularly so he could see me (as I didn't know the exact street I was on -- it wasn't my town; just a stop on the route between my town and my college town).

Believe it or not (ha), my dad managed to find me.  He took my friend home first, and although we weren't really driving on roads (because we couldn't see any of the boundaries by then), the only time we almost got stuck was in my friend's neighborhood.  But we made it, and I got home before midnight -- barely!  The next day we learned about the hundreds of people trapped in shelters around the city.  The roads looked like white parking lots with many bumps for the covered cars.  When we finally we able to get my car -- about three days later -- the snow was higher than the door handle.

Okay, so what's your story?

Offline ShannonH

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Re: Your life -- Stranger Than Fiction
« Reply #1 on: August 31, 2008, 11:18 AM »
Well, mine is depressing, but it's stranger than fiction.

I endured a difficult twin pregnancy. Hung on and delivered them via C-section at 36 weeks. Everybody was pronounced healthy, happy and terrific.
When my son, Eric, was six days old, he died from Sudden Infant Death Syndrome. My remaining twin was hospitalized and put through all kinds of non-invasive tests like echo cardiograms and sleep studies. My remaining son was and is fine though he wore an apnea monitor for about seven months.

At three weeks post-partum, I developed a life-threatening bloodclot in the groin. The doctors decided it was due to the twin pregnancy, an inherited, (but previously undetected), clotting disorder, and birth control pills prescribed to halt endometriosis.

I still suffer from circulation problems in the left leg fifteen years later.

The odds of a bloodclot due to pregnancy are about 1 in a 100. I'm not a statistician, but I'd bet the odds would be incredibly low that all of the above would happen after a safe labor and delivery.

Offline Lill

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Re: Your life -- Stranger Than Fiction
« Reply #2 on: August 31, 2008, 11:39 AM »
Well, this isn't MY life, but I just saw the story today. A man received a donor heart from a man who committed suicide. The transplant patient eventually married the donor's widow, and then himself committed suicide.

http://www.comcast.net/articles/news-national/20080830/Affairs.of.the.Heart/
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Offline 1846

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Re: Your life -- Stranger Than Fiction
« Reply #3 on: August 31, 2008, 11:57 AM »
Maybe this isn't so terribly strange, maybe it's just a fun coincidence, but it's a story I love to tell.

I honestly don't remember how long ago this story begins, but it's at least 25 years ago or longer.

Most colleges have programs where foreign students are matched with local families to provide a home away from home for foreign students so they'll have a place to go on weekends, vacations, and other times when classes weren't in session and the foreign students can't make it home for one reason or another.  Close friends of my parents decided to participate in this program, and they were assigned a young man from Palestine named Omar.

One time, my mom called to say their friends were coming over for lunch and bringing Omar, and did I want to join them so I could meet him?  I did, and we had a very nice time.  Omar was a polite, personable, yet quiet nineteen-year old.

As time went on, Omar graduated from college and then attended Iowa State University in Ames where he earned a PhD in Economics.   My parents saw him on a few more occasions.  When he graduated from Ames, he went back home to do whatever it is that young Palestinians with PhDs in economics do.

Fast forward to the present.

Omar is now the Finance Minister of Hamas.

So while Obama and McCain debate whether or not we should be talking to the leaders of Hamas, I can honestly say that once upon a time, I had lunch with their finance minister at my parents' own dining room table.

Offline andracill

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Re: Your life -- Stranger Than Fiction
« Reply #4 on: August 31, 2008, 12:21 PM »
Steve, that's pretty cool!

Lill, that's freaky...yeah, just freaky!

Shannon, I hope the next time you have a 'stranger than fiction' episode, it's one of joy and miracles!!!

Offline Kim Kasch

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Re: Your life -- Stranger Than Fiction
« Reply #5 on: August 31, 2008, 12:42 PM »
I grew up in a family with 9 kids so I have lots of those super-strange stories.  One is in the October Guide magazine, which I've posted part of on my website.

It's the story of how me, my brother and cousin used to play in a cemetery behind my cousin's house.  One day, there was a flatbed truck parked next to a gravesite and when we got closer we saw a casket sitting on the back of the flatbed.  No one was around.  We snuck up to the truck and when we got close, the lid of the casket started to move, suddenly a man sat up from inside the casket and grinned at us ghoulishly. 

My brother and cousin took off, leaving me behind – like the bear story where they don’t have to be faster than the bear – just faster than me.

Then the other guys inside the truck sat up and started laughing – they’d seen us coming, they were the gravediggers (with a foul sense of humor) and were getting ready to dig a fresh grave. 

Offline DianaM

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Re: Your life -- Stranger Than Fiction
« Reply #6 on: August 31, 2008, 07:48 PM »
Kay - What the heck?? That's crazy. I find that hard to believe, but I guess it's true.

Kim, that's great! I have a lot of weird memories from cemeteries too.

Once I was in that famous graveyard in Paris (you know, where Jim Morrison is buried). I went there my junior year of college with a girlfriend of mine. It was the middle of the day. I turned around and saw a completely naked young man standing a few yards behind my friend! For some reason, I decided it would be best to talk to her in code and said, "We'd better hurry! Our friends are waiting for us!" Well, my friend was very bad at picking  up on code. She mosied slowly along saying "What do you mean? We don't know anyone here!" I could've killed her. I really should've just said "RUN!", but I guess I wasn't thinking straight.

Anyway, I finally got her to run with me, as I watched the strange man standing there smiling at us. Just an exhibitionist, I guess. Probably not dangerous.

The funniest part was when we saw a police car pull up on the path. I went to tell the police what happened, but I didn't know much French so they didn't get what I was saying. I started laughing and they started laughing and I think they just thought we were kidding around. I said, "Un homme! Sans chemise! Sans le tout!" Which is like saying, "A man! Without shirt! Without the all!" They probably thought we were high.
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Offline andracill

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Re: Your life -- Stranger Than Fiction
« Reply #7 on: August 31, 2008, 08:33 PM »
That's a great story, Diana -- very funny :) 

I've never really hung out at graveyards, I must admit...sounds like I'm missing out ;)

Offline Lill

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Re: Your life -- Stranger Than Fiction
« Reply #8 on: August 31, 2008, 09:20 PM »
I have so many stories...and most of them I'm not willing to tell in a public forum. Let's just say, "We've never seen that before," and "It's never happened to anybody else" are things I hear OFTEN.

The spookiest thing is that in 3 out of 5 military moves, 2 people very close to me have died within months of my moving. I was relating this to a new friend here, who said, "3 out of 5, right? Not 5 out of 5."

I said, "If it were five out of five the government would have me locked up somewhere studying me as some kind of a secret weapon."


Oh yeah, and there was the time that I was having a minor surgical procedure and 1) they mistook me for another patient and were preparing to do an entirely different procedure on me 2) when they looked up my blood tests they discovered that my results were put under someone else's name ... I refused to submit to the operation until they cleared that up, and finally, 3) they tried to send me home with the wrong meds..they were narcotics and after the previous ordeal I was ready to take them, but they brought me the right stuff.  I was told, "We make mistakes, but we've never made three on the same person in the same day."  Ummm..I wrote a rather pithy letter after that one, and there were some (ahem) policy changes.

Oh yeah, and the time my mother wouldn't let me go to a football game with my friends, because there was a big rivalry, and she thought it was too dangerous. So I hung out with my friend at her mother's drive through dairy store. When I got there, my friend said some guy kept coming in, acting weird, so we called the cops .. just wanting someone to drive by every few minutes, but they sent a guy with a shotgun who hid in the freezer. He said, "We think that guy is casing the joint and he's planning to rob you. If he comes in again and touches a hair on either of your heads, I'm gonna blow him away. If you hear this freezer door pop open, hit the flloor."  You know store freezer doors don't make a heck of a lot of noise. Nothing happened. The guy didn't come back. But when T's mother came to pick us up, we asked him to let us go to the car to tell her what was going on, so she wouldn't walk in the store, open the freezer, and have a heart attack.

Man, I just have scads and scads of this stuff...my life history mostly.
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Offline Lill

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Re: Your life -- Stranger Than Fiction
« Reply #9 on: August 31, 2008, 09:28 PM »
Oh...oh...I have another one. I was driving home from grad school. Stopped to get gas. Within a mile, my engine lights came on. I pulled off the highway. A deputy pulled up behind me, he happened to be from my home county. I was a couple hundred miles away from from my home town. He checked out my car, and thought maybe I was the victim of gas station tampering .. my oil filter had been pierced and my engine burnt up. Soooooooooooo.....he drove me home. We almost ran out of gas. He pulled into the prison yard to get gas. The "attendant" was shirtless and had hot and cold tatooed above his nipples. (It's an image that won't leave me.) The deputy drove me to my mother's house. I was rather shaken. I get in the house, blubbering and trying to retell the story, when my mother says, "Enough of that, you need to go with your sister and brother to the vet to have the famiy dog put to sleep." And the next day, my friend comes by the house to tell me that she is now dating my ex-boyfriend, and wants to know if  this will end our friendship.

My answer, "My dog is dead. My car is dead. I don't give a **** WHO you date."

I swear these stories are true and unembellished ... probably even understated.

Did I tell you about the time I was the only diagnosed case of measles in my state? Yeah, okay, I'll save that one.  :)

« Last Edit: August 31, 2008, 09:39 PM by lillian »
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Offline Sacha

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Re: Your life -- Stranger Than Fiction
« Reply #10 on: August 31, 2008, 10:00 PM »
Wow, Lill, that is a colorful life! 

Not so much my story as my hubby's but... he's been plauged with health problems his whole life, most recently, in 2005, he had major heart and lung surgery after he received acupuncture that went severely wrong and he lived for a year and a half with several strains of bacteria living inside him.  He was being treated continuously (after we finally got a diagnosis) but he just got more and more sick. 

One day he had terrible chest pains and trouble breathing.  The doctor at the clinic sent him home with pneumonia meds.  A couple days later we found out that the lung had actually collapsed (keep in mind this was days earlier) and he went in for the emergency surgery. :faint   Turns out he had 14 strains of bacteria in him.  We've been told this is possibly a record - his case was even briefly mentioned on a story about the Centre of Disease Control in Atlanta.  His Complex Regional Pain Syndrome (which is a type of chronic pain resulting from injuries) has come back as a result of the bacteria and surgery - he'd had a bad time with it years earlier after a fall down the stairs. (I know, yeesh).

But anyway, that's not the story I was even meaning to tell -- sorry I'm taking the scenic route here, bear with me, it's late.  

His first bout with illness was when a doctor in his small town mis-diagnosed him with a bad cold.  Finally, when he was 9 days old, he was sent by ambulance to the nearest large city two and a half hours away where he was diagnosed with Spinal Menengitis.  It was touch and go for several days and his stay in the hospital lasted for weeks.  Luckily he ended up making a full recovery, but during those weeks (11 days after he was admitted) that a young mother from a small town half an hour in the opposite direction gave birth a bouncing baby girl in the very same hospital.  We didn't find out until after we were married 26 years later that we may have crossed paths way back then.  I figure it must be meant to be   :bear

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Re: Your life -- Stranger Than Fiction
« Reply #11 on: August 31, 2008, 10:18 PM »
My mom waited until I was sixteen to tell me this story, but apparently, when I was but a wee one (6 months old), my parents took my sister (she was almost 3) and I up to the state fair.  My dad was on the other side of vendor stands talking to my grandmother while my mom, older sister and I were on the other side examining a display of princess crowns.  Long story short: my mom had unbuckled me from the stroller because she was going to carry me for a while, but before she could pick me up, my sister pulled the rack down on herself and my mom had to catch it so she wouldn't get hurt.  Out of the corner of her eye, she saw the stroller tip back (with the weight of the diaper bag) and this woman booking it through the crowds with me in her arms.  She told me she kept yelling, "Stop her!  She took my baby!" but everyone just stared at her and watched it happen. 

Now, my mom was raised in a rough area and had, at one point, fended off an mugger at knife point because she had Elton John tickets in her purse and didn't want to give them up, so she's one tough cookie.  She caught up to the woman and pulled me out of her arms (and that's when I started crying, of course).  I guess the woman just mumbled something like "I thought she was lost" under her breath and slipped away while my mom was checking to make sure I was alright.  I feel so bad for her, because if that wasn't enough to scare a mom, the police officer they talked to told them that child abductions at the fair were common and that if she had gotten away, the woman probablly would have shaved my head, taken me out of the state and they never would have seen me again.  My mom was so upset she said she would have punched him if my dad hadn't stopped her!

So that's my weird story!

Offline Carol Anne

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Re: Your life -- Stranger Than Fiction
« Reply #12 on: August 31, 2008, 10:24 PM »
Ok...this one still gives me chills!  I was seventeen, and I had a dream that was very vivid and very detailed.  (I still have weird dreams...to this day). Anyway, this one had no real story...it just featured a very ornate brooch, with a ruby and an intricate (somewhat tacky, I thought...) design. Like something your grandmother would have worn.  ANyway, I didn't think anything of it.  A week later, I went hiking up a local mountain with a group of friends. We stopped after we'd been climbing for about four hours, for lunch, and were chatting over our sandwiches in the sun.  I looked down into the grass.  ANd there it was! The brooch. IDENTICAL to the one I'd seen in my dream.  Of course, I took it home, and had it for about a decade and then it became lost in a move.  I searched everywhere.  Never did make any sense of it. Never dreamed about it again.  Now...beat that!!
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Offline Alison

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Re: Your life -- Stranger Than Fiction
« Reply #13 on: August 31, 2008, 10:35 PM »
The spookiest thing is that in 3 out of 5 military moves, 2 people very close to me have died within months of my moving.

Yikes! I was thinking earlier that my husband and I may be bad luck. In our wedding party, the matron of honor was married to the best man, and the other 4 attendants were single. The ones who were married ended up getting divorced, and the others are all still single 17 years later (which may or may not be bad, but seems unusual). In my husband's last 3 jobs, all at companies with long histories, his departments ended up being shut down, and all 3 companies now have only a small fraction of the number of employees than they used to. We sent our older boys to kindergarten and preschool at a small private school that had been in business for 27 years, and the school shut down unexpectedly at the end of our older son's kindergarten year. The next year, in another state, we sent our younger son to preschool at a dance studio/arts preschool that had been in business for 19 years. I just found it yesterday that it shut down the following year, less than a year after we returned to Texas.

Here's one of my own stranger than fiction stories--the summer after my freshman year in college, I got in a car wreck in a residential neighborhood late at night. No one was around except for me, the couple that hit me, and the police, who were called by someone in the neighborhood. After speaking to the police, I was standing there shaking, with my car totaled and no way to drive home, wondering what I was going to do. A car drove by--the only car I saw come by the whole time--and stopped to see if help was needed.  It turned out to be a guy I knew from high school and had dated a couple of times, and his girlfriend. Neither one of us lived near that neighborhood (it's odd that I was even there), but they said they'd been on their way to a movie and then had changed their minds at the last minute, for no particular reason, and decided not to go, so they turned around and headed back home by a shortcut route...which happened to be where I was. So they drove me home and I felt like someone was watching out for me.

A much less pleasant stranger than fiction story from my life is that there were 3 deaths among people from my high school drama department in about a 6-month period--one accident, one suicide, and one (unsolved) murder. And the murder victim had previously dated someone who was also murdered (very different situation). And there's a lot more weird stuff about all of that, but it's not stuff I'm willing to share here. My current YA manuscript in progress concerns a high school suicide, and it's so much more normal than the things that happened among my friends in real life, because I want it to be believable! (And not sensational or exploitative.) Oh yeah, we also have a close relative whose life is so much stranger than fiction, it's hard to even explain it because it sounds like a soap opera, but unfortunately she has had to live it.
« Last Edit: September 01, 2008, 12:05 AM by Alison »
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Offline Alison

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Re: Your life -- Stranger Than Fiction
« Reply #14 on: August 31, 2008, 11:56 PM »
One more thing... We've almost never gotten jobs without a lot of strange circumstances surrounding the process. It's gotten to where we figure it pretty much has to happen in a weird way for it to be the right job for us!

My husband had been out of work a few months. He really wanted to work in a certain department at Company A, but they had no advertised jobs and no way to apply for unadvertised jobs. Even people he knew who worked in other departments there said they couldn't help him get a resume to the right person. There seemed to be no way in. Meanwhile, against my wishes, he applied for a job at Company B, which had a reputation for long hours and non-family friendly policies. He didn't see how he could turn down any opportunities at that point. Company B suggested he would be a good candidate for their new spin-off, Company C, and he got an interview there. It was supposed to be a full-day, 8-hour interview with several people, followed by a dinner with them at night. He went to the interview and could tell immediately it would be a bad fit for him and our family. So, in a very unorthodox move, he cut the interview short 45 minutes in and told the interviewer he didn't want to work there. Instead of being insulted, she was sympathetic and told him maybe he'd be a better fit for her former workplace--which turned out to be the very department he wanted to work in at Company A! She said she'd call and recommend him right away. So, he left the interview, and no more than an hour later, one of the hiring managers at Company A called him on his cell phone, saying they might have an opening! The caller asked my husband to come have a look around soon, which he did. It was not an official interview, just an informal meeting to chat a bit and see if there was mutual interest, and then the guy had to go out of town.

Meanwhile...my husband interviewed at Company D, which made an offer. They said he had to give them an answer by the end of business the following Monday, or they'd offer the job to another candidate. So he had to call Company A and explain the situation, and ask if they were interested or not. They were, and actually tracked someone down in England (on vacation, I think!) to get him to to approve the job requisition and sign the paperwork to make my husband an offer right away! We still weren't even sure which job we'd prefer, since he did like Company D, but by Monday, we had an offer from Company A, and the pay and benefits were so much better, he felt compelled to take it. Once he started the job, his new boss told him that he was lucky he got in when he did... the day his boss got the e-mail from England approving the hire, there was another e-mail in his inbox announcing a hiring freeze. He said if he had opened the second e-mail before making the offer to my husband, he would not have made the offer. And of course, if Company D hadn't made their offer or set their deadline when they did, the hiring freeze would have definitely been in effect already. So, he got the job he wanted, when it was never advertised, he didn't really interview for it, he did interview for a different job he did not want, he canceled an interview partway through, and there was a hiring freeze on! He ended up working there 4 years. (I'm still not even sure the story is over. He is looking for work again now, and although Company D is no longer in business, he is still in contact with some of the people from there, and there's at least an outside possibility they'll come into play again!) But that would be way too many convenient circumstances and coincidences for a novel!
« Last Edit: September 01, 2008, 12:03 AM by Alison »
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Offline Kim Kasch

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Re: Your life -- Stranger Than Fiction
« Reply #15 on: September 01, 2008, 12:11 AM »
Diana Murray:  I would have thought it was a zombie - it would have made me  :ahh

Offline ecm

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Re: Your life -- Stranger Than Fiction
« Reply #16 on: September 01, 2008, 03:50 AM »
Okay, I can't resist. Here's my "labor day" story. I drafted a childbirth plan for my first baby. My midwife, Lori was highly reputable and part of well-known OB GYN practice. She also had hospital privileges and had even helped to design the hospital birthing rooms I planned to deliver in. The rooms were homey and warm, filled with oak furnishings which hid unsightly equipment, sported a comfy bed and nice decor. I wanted to birth my baby naturally with no drugs or painkillers. I was disappointed when early labor lasted two full days and everything I tried didn't work. Not the long walks, nor the bumpy car ride. Not even the two bottles of castor oil I downed (I had plugged my nose). I was given petocin at the hospital to progress things along.

With my childbirth plan in effect, my hubby and older sister held my acupressure points and my midwife directed the nurses. Lights were dimmed. Soft music played. I knew to make low sounds which supposedly helped move things along. Throughout the evening, I "sounded out" through the contractions. Then I hit a snag. It was at the pushing stage and it was supposed to take minutes. It lasted several hours. Baby was so close, yet I was extremely exhausted. I wanted my baby born naturally so I resisted the urge to say "Rip this baby outta me!" Instead, I asked my midwife "What do I do next?"

Lori, who had just given me oxygen said, "You're going to do what you did last time, only fives times more." Then she said the 'magic words': "You're a champ." I swear I heard the Theme from the Rocky blasting through my head. I was on fire! Full of vigor and energy!

Within minutes, my daughter, Kailani arrived at 4 AM.  :cheerleader

We found out that Lori had held the on-call anesthesiologist at bay. He came in at 2 AM, ready to prep me for a C-section, if necessary. The poor guy paced for 2 hours outside my hospital room--I had no idea. hehe. Baby's placenta was huge--almost the size of baby herself. Then Lori showed us something extraordinary: a little KNOT in baby's umbilical cord! Apparently, baby had created a knot when she was a teeny little thing floating around the womb. Good thing the knot hadn't tightened as she grew!

Incidentally, making low sounds (rather than high pitch screams) during labor works well. I'd recommend this as a birthing technique. What I wouldn't recommend is recording it. My well-meaning hubby, recorded me. I sounded like a fog horn.  :hiding

« Last Edit: September 01, 2008, 10:26 AM by ecm »
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jeanne k

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Re: Your life -- Stranger Than Fiction
« Reply #17 on: September 01, 2008, 05:38 AM »
OK, here's a funny story to lighten the mood a bit.

At one point in college, I lived in a house with 10 other girls. One morning, after a fun night at a party down the block, we awoke to a horrible smell in the second floor hallway. Minutes later, a young man left one of our housemate's room. It turns out our housemate and he had (ahem) "hooked up" the night before.

And the smell? His stinky feet. We had to open up all the windows to air the second floor out after he left. Luckily, he was from another college so we never had to see him again. More than fifteen years later and I can still remember the smell.

I always thought it would make a great scene in a chick-lit book. Of course, people wouldn't believe it. I mean, how bad could his feet have smelled?

Really, really, REALLY bad. And I lived through my brother's stinky adolescence, so that's saying a lot.



Offline DianaM

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Re: Your life -- Stranger Than Fiction
« Reply #18 on: September 01, 2008, 06:52 AM »
This link is great! Thanks for starting this post, andracill!

There is too much good stuff for me to even comment on everything.

Kay, I love how you say that "freezer doors don't make much noise". That's the funniest part!!

Carol Anne, wow! That's very cool. I have had some weird psychic moments too and I also have strangely vivid dreams. Makes you wonder...

Kim, I was on the edge of my seat when I read that. What's so funny is that it sounds like if the boys hadn't left you behind, they would never had known the truth!

ECM , thanks for the childbirth tip about low sounds! That's really helpful, actually. With my first I screamed like a Klingon warrior.

Jeanne, that poor young man! How embarrassing! Of course it's impossible not to laugh, but I feel bad for him. I saw in a documentary that military-grade stink bombs are a very effective weapon...

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Offline Car

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Re: Your life -- Stranger Than Fiction
« Reply #19 on: September 01, 2008, 08:41 AM »
My husband and I are both named after our parents' deceased siblings - my husband after my father-in-law's brother who died as a young man in a motorcycle accident and me after my father's sister who died as a young woman in an airplane crash. Flash forward to the birth of our second son. I called home to tell my folks the good news and my dad tells me it's extra special because it was also his sister's birthday so now "this day will be happy instead of sad." (Can you see where this is going?) Yep - we had no idea but it turns out the day is also my husband's would-be uncle's birthday too. We always thought this was pretty cool. My son has not one but two special guardian angels.
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Offline andracill

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Re: Your life -- Stranger Than Fiction
« Reply #20 on: September 01, 2008, 08:56 AM »
Car, that's very cool!  Lill, I'm afraid if you ever wrote your memoir, no one would believe it was non fiction (especially after Frey) -- but man, it would be interesting reading!

These stories are fascinating!  I'll add another:

When I was around 11 and my brother was 10, we had a male babysitter (our one and only).  He and my brother were wrestling around (as boys do), when my brother bonked his head on the coffee table.  At first, he sat up and laughed.  It didn't seem to hurt much.  But then, a couple minutes later, the babysitter made the mistake of saying, "Where's that blood coming from?"

My brother grabbed the back of his head and started screaming...blood poured down his shirt until it was completely read, and surrounded him in a puddle on the rug (my brother was laying on his stomach, by then, wailing).

The babysitter went white and did NOTHING.  So I ran down the street (in my nightgown) to a neighbor's house where I knew the older sister was a nurse.  She was home and I convinced her to come over, but my brother wouldn't let her near him.  The babysitter locked himself in the bathroom by then (he'd been to our house once before, btw, and that time he really did lock himself in the bathroom -- on accident -- and our neighbors had to use a ladder to get him out the window).  I called the restaurant where my parents said they'd be, but they'd already left.  So we waited...the babysitter in the bathroom, my brother screaming (and bleeding) on the floor, and the nurse and me just watching.

Ah, memories.  Yeah, my brother was fine.  Head wounds bleed a lot.  A few weeks later, as he was healing, we were on our way to CA (road trip) -- my brother and I were wrestling on the hotel bed, and I knocked him to the floor...his scab ripped off, and we left the hotel in a hurry, convinced they'd think a murder had happened there!

Offline Kim Kasch

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Re: Your life -- Stranger Than Fiction
« Reply #21 on: September 01, 2008, 01:22 PM »
Okay one more. 

My brother and sister have the same birthday - not twins.  My husband and I have the same birthday - obviously not twins.  My oldest son and my youngest daughter have the same birthday - another "not twins" case, with the same birthday. 

It's a strange family phenomenon.

Offline 1846

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Re: Your life -- Stranger Than Fiction
« Reply #22 on: September 01, 2008, 02:08 PM »
My brother and sister have the same birthday - not twins.  My husband and I have the same birthday - obviously not twins.  My oldest son and my youngest daughter have the same birthday - another "not twins" case, with the same birthday. 

It's a strange family phenomenon.

We have the same phenomenon!

My dad and my mom's older sister Jean share a birthday.  When I was about eight years old, Aunt Jean divorced her first husband and later re-married.  And of course my new uncle shared a birthday with Mom.  Two couples, and only two birthdays. 

I shared a birthday with two aunts on my dad's side of the family, and my mom's youngest sister shares a birthday with one of her sons.

Offline Kim Kasch

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Re: Your life -- Stranger Than Fiction
« Reply #23 on: September 01, 2008, 02:17 PM »
We have the same phenomenon!


It makes birthdays expensive 'cause you can't spread the spending out over time - no EZ pay method.

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Re: Your life -- Stranger Than Fiction
« Reply #24 on: September 01, 2008, 06:02 PM »
I was robbed at gun point in Grand Central Station and actually saw my life flash before my eyes. No lie people. That really happens. He held the gun to my head and said, "I don't want to have to shoot you." There was no one else around (beside the look out guy) and till this day I wonder what stopped him. I like to think it was my really big guardian angel glaring at him. I don't remember how I left-- whether he said to go or if he went first. All I remember is running up the steps and into the middle of the station where I got some help. I didn't have any money to get home. A stranger stopped and gave me five dollars, more than enough for the train ride home. The guys who took my bag only got five dollars. Next day was pay day! Ha, on them.

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Offline Kim Kasch

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Re: Your life -- Stranger Than Fiction
« Reply #25 on: September 01, 2008, 06:16 PM »
Way scary Danette.  I've only been in Grand Central Station a couple of times and it impressed me as being way prettier than I imagined.  But I did get the creeps in the subway when the lights flashed on and off.

Raising my hat to your GA

Offline ShirleyH

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Re: Your life -- Stranger Than Fiction
« Reply #26 on: September 01, 2008, 06:32 PM »
This happened many years ago when I was a new nurse. I was at work one night in the CCU when I glanced at the heart monitors over the nursing station. A patient's heart started beating again. He had expired about ten minutes earlier.

(It was a condition called electromechanical dissociation--the electrical impulse travels through the heart but the heart cannot beat in response. It freaked me out.)





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Bish

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Re: Your life -- Stranger Than Fiction
« Reply #27 on: September 02, 2008, 05:49 AM »
These are some great stories. Here's mine.

Back between 1966-67 I was madly in love for the first time. The problem was I lived on St. Thomas, he lived in New Jersey. No way at that great distance that our young love would survive. It didn't and when I got "the letter" I was, of course, heart broken.

Flash forward almost 10 years. It was 1975. I was in Philadelphia visiting friends. One day I was crossing a very busy interestion along with a mass of other people during the busiest time of day. Coming towards me through the crowd was a face I thought I recognized even though it was bearded and had long hair. The people were so many we were each swept along going in our opposite directions. As we passed each other, separated by a mass of bodies niether of us could get through, we caught each other's eye. We turned our heads at the same moment to look back at each other as we were carried along by the crowds that were taking us in opposite directions.

On a lark I looked up his name in the phone book. There he was, my first love, and he was living about 3 blocks from where I was staying! I went to visit him. We were a awkward with each other at first, but at least I got to tell him I was glad he was my first love and that he held a special place in my heart. We were both totally amazed at how we had passed each other on the street. We said good-bye and I have never seen him again.

Offline Lill

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Re: Your life -- Stranger Than Fiction
« Reply #28 on: September 02, 2008, 06:40 AM »
Car, that's very cool!  Lill, I'm afraid if you ever wrote your memoir, no one would believe it was non fiction (especially after Frey) -- but man, it would be interesting reading!



Heh, and I only told a small portion. :) In college my friends had a t-shirt made for me saying, "I don't look for trouble, it finds me."
Making metaphors out of molehills for over thirty years.

Offline Lill

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Re: Your life -- Stranger Than Fiction
« Reply #29 on: September 02, 2008, 06:47 AM »
Bish, that's a beautiful story. It would be great in a romance story.
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