Halloween has always been one of my favorite holidays.
Growing up, I fully immersed myself in all things spooky in the month of October. From watching “Friday the 13th” to playing the first “Resident Evil” video game with my older brother, I loved being scared.
Fast forward several years and for the first time in my life, I was afraid of something real.
A few weeks before I graduated college, my fiancee and I found out we were expecting our first child together.
Waves of emotions hit me. “How am I going to take care of this child?”
I waited tables for a couple months and after having more $1 bills than any normal person should have at one time, I began to work at a warehouse loading trucks.
My mindset at the time going into these jobs was that I had to make money and get health insurance right away; there was no room for complaints. My child was on the way in a few months and I needed to save as much as I could.
We were surprised it was a girl.
A whole new wave of fear filled me up. This would be the first girl in my family in the past two generations, and as a result, I was stressed about how I was going to connect with her.
My daughter was due Nov. 3, but the doctor recommended we induce labor so we made an appointment to get induced on Halloween.
I do not have the best memory, but the day leading up to my fiancee being induced and the day of I can remember crystal clear. The day before, my fiancee and I went to see a movie followed by dinner at Burger King.
The following morning we got up before the sun was out, and of all places for our final meal as a family of two, we had Chick-fil-A breakfast.
Then it was time to trek to the hospital. Getting induced is a long, and quite frankly, boring process. There was not much progress in several hours and the hospital couch that I had made my home was making me want to book a chiropractor appointment.
We had a wide range of nurses throughout the day, some incredible and others who should consider another field. I watched YouTube and talked to my fiancee, whose pain was gradually getting worse. When she got an epidural, I had to look away as needles are one of my top 10 fears.
As it got closer to midnight, my fiancee was praying that our daughter would be born the next day so she could avoid being forever associated with Halloween.
But as the clock struck 11:45 p.m., my daughter Adalynn Louise Plourde was born at 9 pounds, 7 ounces and 22 inches long. I almost fainted when she was born, but as soon as I got to hold her in my arms, the months of fear and stress washed away and were replaced by feelings of contentment and warmth.
Last year’s Halloween brought me the best treat anyone could ask for, and this year I look forward to our morning binge watch session of “Sesame Street.”
To celebrate my daughter’s birthday on Halloween and Friday, I will be taking my first days off since starting at the Papillion Times.
No chasing down stories, no deadlines to meet. Just me and my daughter spending the day together.