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     In 1979, I was thirty-four years old and still really wanted to have at least one child, especially a girl. I knew it would enhance our lives. George wasn’t really too hot for the idea but I firmly thought he was finally mature enough to be a parent. We agreed to it and if it turned out to be a boy, we would have another. If the first were a girl, then we wouldn’t need to try again.
        I started checking my temperature every morning to see when I ovulated. We tried all kinds of things. After nearly two years trying, we had given up. George decided that he wanted to go on a diet and he stopped drinking. I think that did it. I was thirty-five when I found out I was pregnant. The doctor told me you would come the 23rd of July. I read a book and counted from what I thought was the conception date and came up with July 10th.
        During the first three months, I caught the Swine flu that was going around. This really worried me because I read that if you are pregnant, during the first trimester, the virus can cause damage to the baby. I took no medications for the flu but had anxiety about what the virus might do to the baby. If anything were wrong I’d have blamed myself for catching the virus. At twenty weeks, I did have an amniocentesis and an ultra sound. After two to three weeks of worrying and hoping the baby was ok, the test result came back normal. Then they asked me if I wanted to know what the gender was. Since I really wanted a girl, I thought I should know so I could prepare myself if they told me that I wasn’t getting my girl. They were 99.9% sure the baby was a female. I was happy but still nervous throughout the pregnancy because of the Swine flu. If anything were wrong, I would have had an abortion. I would have hated to do it but I knew it would not be right for us.

  Joan 1981

Jenna Carol was born at Los Gatos Hospital on July 9, 1981. After the delivery, I was quite sore because I had stitches. Beyond that, when I took her home I was just scared of not knowing what to do. I did have my mother come over and she gave Jenna her first bath. I thought, maybe with the baby, we could become closer. It didn’t work out.
           Carol (Gma) with Jenna 1982
Instead of working five days a week, I started working three because I wanted to be with my baby. She was born with an enlarged heart and had a spinal of electo cardiogram the second day. Because she was born tongue-tied, she couldn’t suck milk from the breast. Right away, she lost weight so we started on the bottle. I wouldn’t let her out of my sight. For the first three months, I would get about three hours of sleep. Between two and four we would be awake. She would be hungry and then wanted to play. Jenna cried when we put her in the crib, so she slept with us in our bed. We took her everywhere with us. I was a very happy mother. George has been an excellent father to our daughter, Jenna. I think I have put a lot into being a parent because of the hurt of my own disappointing relationship with my mother.
           On a ski trip to Lake Tahoe, January 27, 1984, George said, "Lets get married." We had rented a lovely home on Tahoe Keys for our ski trip. One night, our friends Bob and Mary announced they planned to get married the next day. George said we should all get married together at the house. I started phoning people to come up. Alma (George’s mom) and Jenna were already with us. I only had ski cloths, so I went shopping for a dress for Jenna and myself. Twenty-four hours later, we were all decked out with a food buffet, wedding cake and about twenty guests at the house for the nuptials. Jenna was in my arms as I said, "I do."  George and I have been married for seventeen years and together for twenty-seven years.


George, Joan & Jenna