We got concert tickets as soon as we found out Tom Petty was coming to the coliseum. As the date for the concert grew closer so did my contractions. August 15, 2003, the night of the concert, I knew for certain that my size and irregular contractions wouldn’t allow for me to go to a concert I desperately wanted to go to. Danny took my place next to my husband and reported his enjoyment afterward. They had a blast.
My 3rd child was born less than a week later. Kieran Emily Sumpter came into the world on a very stormy August evening. The lightening was so intense that it knocked the power out, on the labor and delivery floor for as far as I could tell, just briefly until the backup generators kicked on. The only thing that was left unrestored in my delivery room was the machine that monitors heart rate and contractions. It wasn’t long before I was in more pain than I’ve ever been in in my life. My epidural drip had run dry. Next to me was a gentleman who was working tirelessly to restore the HR/contraction monitoring machine that would have validated my pain had it been functional. He never did get it back up and running before my daughter made her grand appearance. Much like the anesthesiologist who never made it back around to my room in time to refill my empy epidural drip. My 3rd child, 2nd daughter and 1st natural child birth all occured the same day, August 21st, 2003. Though I had given birth to two children previous to her, I had never experienced such pain in my life. It was foreign to me, and scary. I kept saying… I’ve already had two children and I didn’t feel like this. Somethings wrong. I’m ripping in half. Please help. I was wrong in that nothing was wrong at all, it was what women had felt while giving birth for all of humanity up till recent and the marvels of modern medicine had unveiled this wonderful little thing called anesthesia.
The song Refugee by Tom Petty and The Heartbreakers is a song me and my husband held close to our heart. It was a song we cranked up loud and sang the hell out of when it came on the radio. It was a favorite we played on our home stereo via cd. We sang it word for word, loud as possible and probably even more hideous than loud.
Its a song that I haven’t been able to listen to without crying, and I mean the ugly kind of crying to. The kind of crying that you should hide your face from any onlookers due to the painful contortions ugly crying cause your once pretty little face to be mangled into.
The words have recently sounded different to me. The lyrics mean something new. Not good new. Just new. It occurred to me that for the past year, my children and myself have been living very much the life of refugees and would like to be granted a much needed asylum. There’s no place like home, and for us, for now, homeless is where we are, and where we’ll be until we can find our way back. Back home.
Writers: TOM PETTY, MIKE CAMPBELL By Tom Petty and Mike Campbell
We got somethin’, we both know it,
We don’t talk too much about it.
Yeah it ain’t no real big secret,
But somehow, we get around it.
It don’t really matter to me baby,
You believe what you want to believe,
You don’t have to live like a refugee.
Somebody must have kicked you around some. Who knows why you wanna lay there and revel in your abandon.
It don’t make no difference to me, baby, Everybody’s had to fight to be free,
You see you don’t have to live like a refugee.
Baby, we ain’t the first.
I’m sure a lot of other lovers been burned.
Right now this seems real to you,
But it’s one of those things you gotta feel to be true.
Somebody must have kicked you around some. Who knows? Maybe you were kidnapped,
Tied up, taken away, and held for ransom.
It don’t really matter to me, baby,
Everybody’s had to fight to be free,