Timing is everything, as the popular saying goes, but as most parents of babies
Like a good little soldier, Makenna Katherine Wilson
will attest, little ones generally operate on their own timetables.
However, Little Makenna Katherine Wilson seems to have taken a cue from her mother as to the timing of her much-awaited arrival.
Makenna’s father Army National Guard Staff Sgt. Steve Wilson is with the 1483rd Transportation Company out of Walbridge, which was deployed to Iraq in August. As with any deployment, it was difficult saying goodbye to loved ones and friends, but this time, Wilson was facing the possibility of missing the birth of his first child, due Oct. 25.
“It wasn’t ideal, but he had been deployed to Kosovo during Operation Enduring Freedom in 2004-05 and to Louisiana in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina, and we knew we’d get through it,” Steve’s wife Kayte said.
“I am lucky to have lots of family and friends for support,” she said. “And we hoped that there’d be a good chance that Steve might be able to get a leave around the baby’s due date, being that they had just gotten to Iraq and not many people would want to take their leave so soon.”
Steve was able to plan a leave that would allow him to return to northwest Ohio on Oct. 18. “I was scheduled to be induced Oct. 20, which would give us a couple of days to get ready after he got home,” Kayte said. “Or so we thought.”
In the weeks before the scheduled arrival of both the baby and her daddy, Kayte’s doctor put her on bed rest because of high blood pressure and some swelling.
On Oct. 18, Kayte and her mom, Mary Wolff, set out for Detroit Metro Airport to meet Steve. “When we got to the airport, it was really crowded and we stood and waited for him for quite awhile,” Kayte said.
“After he got off the plane and we hugged and said hello, he was waiting for his baggage, and I went and sat on an adjacent (baggage) carousel,” she said. “I just kind of looked down at my stomach and said, `Ok, you can come now.’”
On the way back to Toledo, the trio was busy catching up as Steve shared stories about his time in Iraq. “I didn’t think much about it because I had been having Braxton Hicks (pre-labor) contractions for awhile,” Kayte said.
It was after her mother noticed Kayte gripping the door and the vehicle’s center console at regular intervals that she asked if everything was ok.
“I guess I was a bit distracted and didn’t even realize how close together the contractions were,” Kayte said.
“Once he realized what was going on, Steve, who was in the back seat, wanted to go directly to the hospital, but we made a stop at my parents’ house first,” Kayte said. “My doctor was on vacation until the next day, but I called the hospital and they told me to come in, just to be on the safe side.”
Upon arrival at the hospital, Kayte was examined and told that it was, in fact, labor.
And the next day, little Makenna Katherine Wilson made her debut at 12:47 p.m., weighing in at six pounds, 12 ounces.
“Things all happened so fast,” Kayte said. “Poor Steve – he was in the same clothes for about three days.”
Though Makenna did seem to arrive on cue, her birth was not completely without surprise. “We totally thought she was going to be a boy,” Kayte said.
Though she is an ultrasound technician, Kayte and Steve decided not to be told their baby’s gender during her pregnancy. “We didn’t care either way and we really wanted to be surprised,” she said.
“However, my mom, who is just about always right about these things, was convinced it was going to be a boy, so we just went along with her prediction,” Kayte said. “My husband really wanted to name the baby Kyle, so when she was born, we didn’t even have a girl’s name in mind.”
After the whirlwind couple of days, the Wilsons spent the rest of Steve’s leave together getting settled before his return to Iraq.
Technology allows the new father to keep in touch on a regular basis. “We talk on the phone and recently used Skype (Internet phone service), so he was able to see us and we could see him,” Kayte said.
“And he just sent us roses for Valentine’s Day,” she said. “
In the meantime, Makenna’s grandparents, Joyce and Larry Wilson, of Northwood and Mary and Bill Wolff, of Toledo, are happy to help out as needed.
“Of course, we’re looking forward to when Steve comes home – which we’re expecting in July,” Kayte said. “He plans to take some time to get to know her before resuming his master’s studies at Bowling Green State University.”