Eleven years ago today, my wife Ann gave birth to four of the most wonderful people in my life: Pat, Nick, Ken, and Helen Forbeck. The quadruplets were born within two minutes of each other, eleven weeks premature. They weighed between 2.75 and 1.5 pounds.
Ann spent sixteen weeks on full or partial bedrest at home and another ten in the hospital, drugged up past her eyeballs on muscle relaxants meant to keep those kids in her as long as they could manage. She’s my hero in so many ways, but that’s the most amazing and dedicated act I’ve ever seen anyone perform. And she did all that and much more for those kids.
Those beautiful babies spent eight to eleven weeks in the hospital before they could come home. We had a platoon of doctors and nurses taking care of them down at Rockford Memorial, and we came home to an army of volunteers, including my mother, who moved back from DC and lived in our unfinished basement for six months.
During that first year, I sent out weekly email updates to our family and friends, complete with stories and pictures about the kids. At one point, I thought I’d make a book about it, and I prepared a pitch package for it, complete with a couple sample chapters. I never got far with it, perhaps because many other things demanded my attention in those days.
However, lots of people ask me about my kids and what their birth was like. On this, their eleventh birthday, I’d like to share that with you. I’ve taken the pages from that forgotten book pitch and trimmed them down into an 11-page PDF packed with dozens of photos from the most amazing day in my life. It’s free for you to enjoy.