Jan. 27, 1976

Tuesday Night

Dear John

            Evelyn is expecting very soon (maybe tonight?) She has been having contractions (labor pains) for about 24 hours now. Tonight the pains are coming closer together 15 min. and getting stronger. We enrolled in “Lamaze” child birth class and Monday night we took the last class that presented all the material we needed to know to have the baby. There are still two more classes to go, but they just talk about what drugs you may take if you have to.

Thursday Night

            Well I’m a father of 6 lb. 7 oz (2930 gm) 21 in (51 cm) little girl. Evelyn came through the whole thing in great shape. We did the Lamaze method the whole way and the only drug she had was novocaine for the stitches (they do a little cut so the baby can come out better.) Virginia Taylor Cox

            I’m here to tell that baby is the most beautiful girl in the world (her mother excepted.) Since Evelyn didn’t need any drugs the baby had a beautiful color from the very first and can she squall. We were looking in the nursery window tonight and she started crying and you could hear it right through the glass.

            The baby came Wednesday morning at 4:43 A.M. After we went to bed Tuesday night (right after I wrote the first part of this letter) about 10:15 PM we started getting the contractions closer together and I called Kenneth Wilkins (he’s been her doctor from the beginning) and he talked to Evelyn and me and said that we should come on up since we were so far away. Well we took our time and got there about 1:00 A.M. Wednesday morning. Evelyn got prepared and I changed into a scrub suit. And Kenneth came in and examined her. She was “Fully Effused” and “3 cm dilated”, a sign that it was really happening. Since the amniotic sac had not ruptured to this point he went ahead and did it manually. (This is done in about 50% of all deliveries.) He said it should also stimulate labor a little. Well it did. The contractions started coming closer together and got more intense. We went into our routine and were keeping things under good control.

            About this time Kenneth brought in a machine that they have just started using. It had two sensors. One was on an elastic belt around Evelyn’s stomach which picked up her contractions and the other was hooked like an “eeg” to the baby through the birth canal to monitor the fetal heart beat. An oscilloscope monitored the heartbeat and there was a “strip-chart” with two pens; one for the heart beat and one for the contractions. It helped a lot because I could tell Evelyn when to expect another contraction since I could see the intervals between them.

            The labor went pretty fast and soon Evelyn felt the urge to push. That was a sign we had been told about. (The urge must be resisted if the cervix isn’t completely dilated.) The nurse came in and said well it was probably too early to be completely dilated and she shouldn’t push. After about one more contraction, they were less than a minute apart now, she went and got Kenneth. He examined her and announced she was completely dilated and could push all she wanted. She did and soon (5-10 mins.) They announced that the baby was on its way and we went to the delivery room (just about 15 feet away).

            After, I got my mask and cap and shoe cover on and Kenneth established his “sterile field” down at the business end, Evelyn pushed about three times and the head was delivered (we could see it all in one of those big round convex mirrors). The shoulder came next and before the body was completely delivered that little gal was squalling to the world to know. John that was the damnedest experience that ever was, I didn’t know whether to laugh cry or fall over. Evelyn was just as excited as I was and we were both about to bust.

            Kenneth had asked if anyone was waiting and we said yes. Mother and Gwin Lee were out in the Father’s waiting room. So He got a phone brought in and Evelyn and I talked to her from the delivery room. After a while of taking pictures (Kenneth was snapping pictures of everything) the baby was taken to the nursery and Evelyn to the Recovery room and I was beginning to feel tired. I better get this mailed.

Z Cox