My Eldest Daughter's Birthday

The photo is of me, hubby, daughter Dana, and her hubby Mike. She says she's 57 today but I don't know how that could possibly be. As my sister said, "If our kids keep getting older they'll soon pass us up."

It doesn't seem possible that it's been 57 years since I woke up with labor pains, had to ask my father-in-law and his new bride to take me to the hospital since I'd spent the night at their house and didn't have a car anyway.

The hospital was in Cambridge MD and I was 3000 miles away from my home in Los Angeles and my family. Hubby was stationed in Norfolk VA and couldn't come when he was called as he was the bus driver on a trip to and from North Carolina. He didn't make it until the next day.

Dana Kathleen was the first of five children, all the rest born in California.

Always an easy child, she did have her quirks. She didn't speak in a language others could understand--she had an array of strange words that her grandparents, aunt and I understood. Hubby went overseas when she was 6 months old and we lived with my folks though he came home often enough that I became pregnant with our number two daughter.

When hubby came home when she was nearly three, we moved on the Seabee base in Port Hueneme. Dana made friends with a little girl who lived across the way who asked, "Why do you talk like that?" From then on, Dana spoke like all the rest of us.

After I had number two daughter, Lisa, we moved into a little house in Los Angeles and hubby was gone again. I became deathly ill to the point of not know what was going on. Three-year-old Dana took care of her infant sister and got a neighbor to call my grandmother to come help because my parents were on vacation.

Dana has been an amazing person ever since. She helped take care of her siblings as they grew up. And she babysat in our neighborhood from the time she was eight-year-old.

Her high-school sweetheart was and is her true love. They married right out of high school. She began her working career as a Kelly Girl. She and Mike have two children. Mike was nearly killed in a horrific accident with the truck he drove and Dana stayed at the hospital the entire time he was there. His recovery was miraculous.

She recently retired from the Oxnard School District after nearly 30 years working as a secretary in various positions. Now she and Mike, who is also retired, love traveling in their RV and spending time with their five grandchildren--who, of course, are also are great-grandchildren.

Yes, it's hard to believe we could have a daughter this old--but I guess it's true.

Happy Birthday Dana!


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