–by Heather Murphy
Eleven years ago to the day, I was driven up to the emergency entrance of the birthing center in a nearby Southern Oregon town, excited, afraid, and as ready as I could be for the sixteen hours of hallucinatory labor that would follow before my stubborn son was surgically extracted from me. The home birth had deteriorated. It diverted as far off course as I’d let my imagination run during the early months of the pregnancy when irrational fears can get the best of you at any given moment.
But I had my game face on. This was going to be a magical experience, regardless of how many surgical instruments might be implemented.
As they wheeled me in, ash rained down on me from the Biscuit Fire, unceremoniously decorating my hair with its ruined confetti. The fire wasn’t “close,” but it was close enough, and it was…
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