Two UCLA stories that are linked together.

Not many people associate a hospital with Saint Patrick’s Day. Not many people have a close relative who was born on Saint Patrick’s Day. I will forever link UCLA Hospital with the Day of the Shamrock. That is because on that occasion my one granddaughter was born in UCLA’s new maternity ward.

Her birth in 2011 was extra special for several reasons. First of all, her grandfather and my father had been born on the same date. Second, an eye appointment made for my mother-in-law seemed perfectly timed on that particular weekday. Her 3:00 PM appointment gave her, my husband and I thirty minutes to spend with the newest addition to my son’s family. We were able to sneak-in a brief period of time, which fell between the baby’s bath and the time of the scheduled appointment.

I could recall the day when the new infant’s father was born, also at UCLA. My pregnancy had allowed me to appreciate the scientific mind of Dr. Tabesh. He had taken my case, because at that time I was only the fifth California female to carry a child, while benefitting from the presence of a ventricular- peritoneal shunt. As someone who had pursued a career in biomedical research, I admired the way that Dr. Tabesh approached the appearance of complications, during my seventh month.

He made a point of reading-up on my condition. He consulted with other physicians and invited at least one of them to talk to me. As a result, he managed to develop the sort of routine that would allow me to continue my pregnancy without much difficulty. He discovered a way to keep the fluid flowing in my shunt; I simply had to sleep sitting-up for about two months. In some ways, that was a challenge; however I realized on March 17, 2011 that any problems associated with that simple remedy were quickly forgotten, as I met my new granddaughter.

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