Long, nightly rehearsals had drained me. Leaving home early, returning post-10, I’d pretty much just dined, whined, and pushed through the cycle. Meeting schedule down, hours with Carrie diminished, I’d trudged the week stirred by the melodies of my favorite musical and fueled by the promise of Thursday’s anticipated delivery. We were opening in Chardon Friday, YES— but clearly it would be only second grandest curtain raised this week!

“Ruby Emma Bohrer arrived at 6:54 am. She’s perfect”

Sitting at my Ohio desk I read the text from Sir Bones of Chicago. Eyes full, “Thank you God” on my lips, I let it out. And I called Carrie. And I smiled.

“She’s perfect”, he’d typed.


“The surgery went well and she’s in mom’s arms now.”

I didn’t feel like working. Nor that moment…not the rest of the day…not at all. Business? How anticlimactic! The papers to push and calls to make and things to do would be done tomorrow. My baby just had a baby!

“This is here waiting for you…” read Jason’s next text. Attached was a snapshot of the baby’s first hat, a yarn ski cap. I got Lucy’s too a few years back. This one, baring no hospital logo, was lavender stripes. I guess the times, they are a changin’ (Ed. Note 1: From the east I get birthday candles; from the west it is headgear).

It was a wondrous day. At some point I spoke to Stacy; her voice was hoarse. This I couldn’t quite understand. (Perhaps I’ll review the obstetrics notes from my days as a medic).

Tired, she was…so we didn’t speak long. I told her I loved her, that I’d see her in a week, and yet again that I loved her.

“8 lbs, 13 oz” read another text. Then “20.25 inches”.

I had to give it to Bonesy—he sure kept us in the loop.

A picture came—of the mother and child. Then another — the father with newborn. (Ed. Note 2: A sturdy Jason wore a surgeon’s mask; the kid had on headgear earmarked for my closet).

I called Harold and Harriet, but told Helen in person. (The day’s order: brisket sandwich, side of applesauce, matzoh ball soup).

One call there was, left to make: to the maternal great-grandparents –long distance….

I called my father first. After all, the middle name in Hebrew was Abigail. For my father she was named, and the translation perfect: “A father is joy”.

“Is that you Bruce?” he answered.
“What’s with the caller ID?”.
“No, hotshot. But who else could it be? Your brother was never one to phone. Remember when he bought the new car and never called to tell me? And your aunt’s still afraid to dial long distance without her rotary dial.”

“Do you mind if I get your ex-wife on the phone?” I asked.
‘”Why would I mind? After all…Harriet’s not here.”
“Hold on. If I lose you I’ll call you back.”
“I’m the one you never lost, Little Boy.”

“Hello, who is this?”. The voice was familiar.
“Sam? It’s Bruce. Can I talk to my mother?”
“She’s lying down — let me see if she will come to the phone. You may have to call back after ‘Wheel Of Fortune’.”

(Three minutes passed during which I heard rumblings and the whistle of an adjustable a hearing aid).

“I’m going to put you on speaker phone so your mother doesn’t have to get up.”

Punching in my father’s line they achieved a cellular unity surpassing their best days of marriage.

MOM: “What is it Bruce?”
DAD: “Elaine, I’m on the phone too.”
BB: “Stacy had the baby. Everybody’s healthy.”
MOM: “Wonderful? Sam, did you hear that?
—-in the background I discern her second husband bowing, “Yes Elaine”.
DAD: “When are you going up there? Make sure you call my sister.”
MOM: “I’m going to cry.”
—-in the background, a plaintive Sam is asking “Elaine, you should rest. I’ll
tape ‘Jeopardy’”.
DAD: “Don’t take this the wrong way, but I have to get off the phone and get to Lodge meeting.
SAM: “Bruce, your mother is overwhelmed. She’ll call you tomorrow.”

I hung up the phone with a smile. My parents were thriving—each on his/her game, each clearly in a better place.

Weren’t we all?

I drove to Chardon with a song in my heart. Final dress rehearsal.  At the end of the first act there’s a big production number: “The Wells Fargo Wagon”. I sang it with gusto.  The wagon, after all, had arrived…

And delivered us Ruby.

3 Responses to “SPECIAL DELIVERY”

  1. Stuart says:

    Congrats to all! Pretty, pretty good!

  2. Mark E says:

    Congratulations and Mazel Tov……………..we couldn’t be happier for you!

  3. bob says:

    Mazel Tov on the new addition.

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