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August 21, 1955

August 21, 2021

It was hot. It was middle Suburbia, in Middle 20th Century. Floods were ranging through Pennsylvania. It was the 8th month of 1955, every one of which had been in pregnancy, now soon over.

The drugs were administered, but less this fourth time in the 11 years and three previous pregnancies. Yet there would be little awareness of birth, save awakening to a visiting baby, soon rushed out of sight, for feeding. Being a boy, immediate circumcision.

The third child to live, after a loss, full term, of the firstborn (perhaps due to a doctor delayed by a golf game), brought to air breathing by uncontrollable contractions of physical ejection, out into a white linen antiseptic place of bright light and safety from the murky world of human pain and mess.

Mother’s milk was inferior to manmade nutrition. The father was absent, as he was for much of the rest of the post birth world. Great celebration, soon home to a place of a five and ten year old. long out of diapers fully enmeshed in schooling. This careful composition was betrayed by the delay in its effectuation, after a brutal war wrecked every norm – for these parents the pre-war decade of childfree by choice bliss in the party, jazz of booze and cigarettes of Manhattan was forever ago.

The parties were over. the jazz was on the HiFi, and Manhattan was a nice place to visit. Meals were now nutritious from fresh frozen, work was from a railroad, days started and ended by the train schedule. But this last, this third child was born the last brick in the wall building a Family after the chaos of war, capping the Family Home, fully remade in the hopes of the parents, now filled by three new humans not even considered a dozen years before.

Children were now part of our culture’s life. Their creation and their creation beyond birth had become the Prime Directive it always was, but now with the desperation of survivors. It was a time of trying to control what had been completely threatened, ended for many, dubious in its outcome, but, now, in a world my parents were creating.

But they, then, like we, now, forget that the world makes us, too. What we are is not made by us, but we are made by all the realities we cannot control. So the gap between what was given and what was wanted was filled with the ways that could be controlled. Birthing in white linen, with all the safety of the unconscious. Living in the creations that could be made, versus accepting what was unavoidable.

66 years ago today, the last piece of construction was put into place, and the next 20 years saw that place be what it always was, uncontrollable. A family that started together pulled away for survival, shaping the new lives, defining those who created them.

There are seldom heroes and villains outside of the comic book, there are only us, the humans. We are not what we create, we are created by what we never were, but in the reality of what we come to want.

Birth is a gift. It was undesired by the born, but completely necessary for their existence, but at the moment the cord is cut, the birth simply continues, until the human that is made can know who they are, and who made them.

Birthdays, then, for me, are a marker, not a celebration. The change from the murky mess of making into the white linen hopes did not stop when I breathed air for the first time. But being born happened. Today. 66 years ago.

3 Comments leave one →
  1. mary zahl permalink
    August 21, 2021 12:46 pm

    Happy Birthday, Duo!! So glad you were born👶 Much love, Mary and Paul

    On Sat, Aug 21, 2021 at 11:58 AM Saved By Design wrote:

    > Duo Dickinson posted: ” It was hot. It was middle Suburbia, in Middle 20th > Century. Floods were ranging through Pennsylvania. It was the 8th month of > 1955, every one of which had been in pregnancy, now soon over. The drugs > were administered, but less this fourth time in ” >

  2. Eileen Banisch permalink
    August 21, 2021 2:45 pm

    So well said! Happy birthday Duo.

  3. Cheryl Foca permalink
    August 21, 2021 4:22 pm

    Hope you have a happy day –

    On Sat, Aug 21, 2021 at 10:58 AM Saved By Design wrote:

    > Duo Dickinson posted: ” It was hot. It was middle Suburbia, in Middle 20th > Century. Floods were ranging through Pennsylvania. It was the 8th month of > 1955, every one of which had been in pregnancy, now soon over. The drugs > were administered, but less this fourth time in ” >

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