Wednesday, January 6, 2010

"Quadrivium: The Devil, As I"--introducing Tomas Alasdair Mendez

Tomas Alasdair Mendez was born in a community hospital on April 1st, 1971—a bad omen to his family, one frequently ignored by his parents and never discussed in the Mendez household. As if being born under a bad sign were not enough, complications at birth almost ended his life before it ever began. At a time when medical science was crossed between traditional remedies and advanced technology, Tomas’s parents found themselves on this most comical day of the year at a crossroads of choice. The baby, a boy weighing approximately 6 pounds, 6 ounces, was slowly being suffocated in his mother’s womb. In the final push towards delivery the umbilical cord found its way around the baby’s neck, chocking life from lungs that were yet to breathe their first breath.
“You will have to choose,” the doctor said to the unborn baby’s father. Because time was of the essence, the man, Rafael Mendez, father of four, acted on the only likely decision he could make considering the circumstances. Having already one son and three daughters, the decision was easy, he would say later in defense of his decision, “I am a worker. What can I do without a mother at home for my children?” The statement, said in question to the doctor, a replacement for the family’s customary specialist who was away dealing with immediate family matters, was his justification.

“I am sorry,” the doctor said. “We cannot guarantee both of them, but you will have to sign for one. You will have to choose, but please note, time is not on your side.” Without hesitation, the unborn child’s father signed the required form which would indicate the emergency surgical procedure for a staff waiting down the hall. In a room of white, electrical devices monitored the fleeting rhythms of two heartbeats, ready to act on only one’s behalf. In a moment anticipated by family as the start of a new chapter in an ever growing volume of family lineage, two lives hung on the decision of one. The doctor and an emergency aid hurried away to act on behalf of the fortunate, and administratively prepared for the fate of the other. In a miraculously course of chance, movement within the womb, and perhaps an act of fate, the mother’s life was spared and her child was born—not dead—but alive.

Divine intervention may have played a part as the doctor proceeded with incisions as part of a cesarean birth, believing the stillborn child would not be born vaginally without pending further complications. Nurses, now numb to the process, prepared the station normally set aside to welcome life in its first moments, instead to make way for a child snuffed of life by the creature destined by God to secure life for all. As the moments ticked by, nurses tended to the mother, Victoria Buenostro Mendez, each second and each tear of her skin by skilled hands, added to another beat in the rhythm of her heart. She would not remain conscious long enough to hear the faint first cries of her newborn son as the doctor pulled him away from the slush of amniotic fluid and the sack where the seeds of sin nurtured his conception.

The boy was born “completely healthy” the doctor would later say, with adoration for his own efforts to a sullen waiting room of family and friends. “We were able to save them both. They are fine.” Tomas Alasdair Mendez came into the world at exactly 3:00AM on the morning of April 1st, 1970. He was examined and cleared of any possible birth defects and was displayed hours later after having his skull reformed by carefully attentive hands. Ugly as he may have been, he was welcomed into the world as ‘normal’, the proud product of a humble family. To the casual observer, he was exactly that—normal. But only with an eye keen to the ways of heaven and knowledge of hell would anyone see beyond his flesh to understand the encompassing battle between the Angel of Death and the Guardian Prince from heaven chosen to protect his life. With a hoard of faces pressed to a cold glass window, he was welcomed into the world and for the next thirty-five years he would always seem to exist in a world opposite an imaginary glass. This day in April, charted on an official hospital record is the only time Tomas Alasdair Mendez would ever appear or be classified by those who knew him, as ‘normal.’

1 comment:

冬天 said...


FUND a School Project today!!!

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