Monday, December 31, 2007

Our PKD Story - Chapter 5: The Blackout

Thankfully, everything proceeded smoothly with the pregnancy for the first few weeks. But, then came Thursday, August 14th, 2003. Jeanne’s mom had bought tickets for The Little Prince on Broadway in NYC and invited Jeanne and TJ along to the show. The show ended and everyone was filing out of the theatre. There was an elevator available, but since the line was long, Jeanne convinced her mom that they should just take the stairs. Just as they were reaching the bottom of the stairs, the lights went out.

At precisely the same time, I was working hard at my office in East Fishkill (that’s my story and I’m sticking to it) when suddenly the lights went off and the computers all went dead. Of course, being less than two years removed from 9/11, the “terrorism” thought shot through my mind, as I’m sure it did for many. We quickly found out that this was a widespread blackout, and then it hit me: my pregnant wife and 8 year-old son are going to be stuck in NYC. Jeanne did not yet have a cell phone (not that it appears it would have done much good if she did) so all I could do was drive home and wait for a phone call. Finally, around 8PM, the call came. TJ, Jeanne, and her mom had headed across town to her Aunt Audre’s apartment in Tudor City. They would plan on spending the night there and would figure out a plan for getting home the next morning.

Of course, the next problem for Jeanne was what to do about her medication. She fully expected to be home that evening, so she did not have her nighttime dosages of medications available to her. So, Audre and Jeanne had to make the trip 30 blocks uptown to the New York Presbyterian ER to get some medication prescribed. They attempted to take a bus, but the going was slow and Jeanne quickly became queasy, so they ended up walking much of the way.

While they were gone, there were some interesting conversations going on back at the apartment. We had just a few days earlier decided that the pregnancy had gotten far enough along that we shared the news with TJ that he was going to be a big brother, but noone else knew yet. We were planning on letting everyone else know that weekend, so we didn’t make a point to TJ to keep the news under his hat. So, TJ was trying to tell his grandmother and the rest of the crowd at the apartment that his mom was going to have twins, but nobody would believe him. When Jeanne finally returned in the early hours of the morning, she confirmed the news.

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