A sharp and unbearable pain suddenly pierced my side.
"OUCH!" I yelled.
It was early in June, starting to feel like summer.
Like any other teenager, I was hanging out at the playground, leaning against a fence.
"What’s wrong," asked my friend, Julie.
"I don’t know," I said, innocently.
I was seventeen years old and nine months pregnant.
I had heard rumors of how painful child birth would be.
But really, I didn’t know what to expect.
Every few minutes, I’d clench my teeth until the pain settled down.
Julie and I walked a quarter of a mile to a hospital.
At the emergency room, a doctor immediately brought me into an exam room.
"Get undressed and put on this gown," he said.
He told me to lie back on the examination table.
He told me to spread my legs wide.
He inserted two of his fingers into my vagina.
"Your cervix is dilating," he said. "We will need to break your water."
The midwife used a small hook to pierce what the doctor called an "amniotic sack."
Quickly, I was moved to the delivery unit.
I was like a child, confused and overwhelmed by the many pieces of a puzzle.
I didn't know which pieces to join next.
As if helping that child, the doctor said, "Talia, now push."
Sweat dripped from my forehead.
"Push," the doctored encouraged me.
"I can’t!" I cried.
I was exhausted.
"Push," he said.
I pushed again.
Then she screeched.
I lifted my head to see her.
She was tiny, five pounds and five ounces.
I rested my head on the pillow, completely numb, and fell asleep. Like an exhausted child waiting to be tucked-in.