29: The Birthday that Included Nurses, Firemen, and a Newborn


Rylee was born about a month before my 29th birthday, so I really wasn't planning on doing anything spectacular. I would have been happy with just a slice of chocolate mousse cake and Netflix. I decided though that it would probably be in my best interest to get out of the house and you know, not wear yoga pants for once. Just a small dinner. It would still be relaxing.

OR. SO. I. THOUGHT.

The day started out as normal. I fed Rylee throughout the night and slept in a little (with a newborn, more than 2 hours of sleep means sleeping in). I woke up, marathon-ed Bones on Netflix (Netflix, I can't quit you!), and snuggled with my sweet baby.

Sometime in the afternoon, I had the best idea. I was going to wear my wedding ring for my birthday. The last time I wore it was my second trimester, and I felt like my fingers were looking less like hot dogs these days. I took a quick shower, changed, and put the ring on my finger. And can you believe it, that sucker fit! That's when the trouble began.

I tried to take my ring off, but it wouldn't budge. The ring was stuck on there like a crayon in a kid's nose. I tried to remain calm and quickly Youtube-d some videos on how to remove it. I tried Windex, butter, floss, EVERYTHING you can think of, and my ring wouldn't move. That's when I really started to freak out. That's also when my finger began to swell.

***Meanwhile, Rylee was peacefully napping because that's what newborns do and if I didn't mention it, I know some of you would have been like, "Yo! Why aren't you watching your baby, you negligent mother with the sausage fingers?!" Thanks, friends.

By this point, my finger started turning purple. I had to make a choice: 1) chop off my finger and die from massive blood loss, 2) see a doctor and live another day to take care of my child.

So I grabbed a knife and...put it back down. I quickly packed Rylee's diaper bag, apologized for waking her up, and drove to the closest urgent care. 

"Oh, you got your ring stuck? Don't worry, happens all the time." said one of the nurses, an angel sent from above. "We can hold your baby also, we'll wash our hands."

While I filled out some paperwork, I overheard the nurses youtube-ing videos on how to remove a stuck ring. I was a tad bit nervous.

"We can try that floss trick," the angel nurse told me. We'll call her Angel since I can't remember her name.
"Sure," I said. Maybe they would have better luck.

After three lidocaine injections and multiple failed attempts to slip the floss under my ring, I begged them to just cut it off.

"It's not really necessary to cut off your finger at this stage," said Angel. My sweet, sweet Angel. "But we can try cutting the ring if that's OK with you?"

"Yes, please." I love you, Angel.

***Meanwhile, the nurse (heaven-sent) who was holding Rylee also changed her diaper.

So yeah...their ring cutter wasn't strong enough to cut my ring. *insert cute joke about how my marriage is so awesome that not even a ring cutter could break through my wedding band* Anyway, Angel left the room for a moment to discuss other options with the nurses. At this point, I was on the verge of tears. Let's not kid ourselves. I was bawling.

Angel returned and explained, "we didn't want to make you drive to a hospital with a newborn, so we called the Fire Department. They're right next door so they'll be here in five minutes. I'll be waiting for them at the front, OK?"

"OK," I sobbed.

Let me paint this picture for you. I was sitting in the exam room, hand totally numb and tears streaming down my face. I was wearing my husband's oversized basketball shorts and a Game of Thrones t-shirt. Next to me was the nurse (did I mention she was 11 months pregnant?) who held my newborn baby and was also crying because she felt sorry for me. And there we were, me with my swollen hand and this pregnant nurse holding my baby, crying together in the exam room.

And just when I thought this couldn't have been any more embarrassing, five firemen burst into the room to witness the whole thing. This part was kind of a blur so I'll just summarize.

"Erh...hello. I hear it's your birthday. I've got a present for you." Fireman #1 pulls out the ring cutter. "Don't move your hand or I might cut it. Ha!"
"Okay," I managed to whimper, almost dead from embarrassment.
"I'm training this fella over here so just be patient with me," Fireman #1 points to Fireman #2. Fireman #3-#5 watch in the background and talk about how my finger looks like a hot dog and how a hot dog sounded good for lunch (I'm not really sure what they were doing so I can only imagine).

And with a quick snip, that was that. The firemen left. My finger was free. And my relaxing birthday turned into this mess of a day. Despite it all, I ended up with a really fun story to tell that night and got to spend my birthday with all sorts of wonderful people.

And just in case you needed proof.

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