How well I remember each of the births of our six children ~ memories I want to treasure in my heart forever. The joy of childbirth far outweighs the pain of labor to bring a child into the world. Our birth experiences are some of my most treasured moments.
And now, the births of our grandbabies ~ there are no words to describe the joy, and the deep emotions I have felt as our daughters have given birth (both through pregnancy, and also through adoption of newborns). Part of my heart as a mother is always with each of our children, and at certain specific times I am even more deeply aware of this. Some of those times are when a daughter is in labor, and then also as she is bonding with her newborn baby during those first days and weeks.
Thursday, March 15, found me in one of those intensely emotional times as a mother. I may have looked calm (at times!) to the observer, but my heart was not totally in place within me. We spent most of the day in the waiting room, but my heart was in the birthing room with our youngest daughter, Carrie. (Photo above - my husband, our youngest son, and I spent a bit of time with Carrie in the early stages of her induced labor, induced due to a concern with high blood pressure. One day before her due date ...)
We were filled with excitement to finally be able to see our new grandbaby, and also to discover if the baby was a boy or a girl, as Tyler & Carrie had chosen not to find out ahead of time. Such excitement was in the air! We brought three year-old "big brother" to the hospital (as we had kept him for the night before the birth), and thinking that the labor would go fairly quickly, we waited in the waiting room that morning until the time of birth in mid-afternoon - along with other family and friends. Oh ~ I sat there in the waiting room, helping care for Cruz ~ but I was very aware that parts of my heart were being stretched, pulled into what our daughter was experiencing in the room so close by. It is difficult to describe the feelings that I experienced - feelings of being scattered in heart and mind, of having a need to be held together as I waited while our daughter labored to give birth.
Tyler kept us updated with texts and quick visits to the waiting room ~ and then, Angi (Tyler's mom) and I could hardly contain ourselves when we heard the cries of a newborn! In a short time, Tyler came bursting into the waiting room as he excitedly and tearfully shared the big news: "It's a Girl!!"
How do you explain the overwhelming love and joy that fills a heart, and spills out everywhere? Our daughter had given birth to a beautiful, precious baby - the most valuable, priceless gift from God - and, this sweet baby was a GIRL! I had wished for a baby girl, knowing, though, that either a boy or a girl would have filled us with joy. But I could hardly contain myself with joy over the news of a baby girl, a sister for Cruz, and a daughter for Tyler & Carrie! Tyler maybe was surprised at how quickly I moved across the room to tearfully put my arms around him for joy. Overflowing, inexpressible joy - the miracle of birth.
And when it was our turn as family to enter the room where the miracle of birth had taken place (after Cruz first had some special moments of introduction to his baby sister), it's like I was pulled in by a magnet - my husband and I were overjoyed to express our love to our daughter, and to see and hold our precious new grandbaby in our arms.
Thank You, Lord ~ for the priceless gift of new life, for precious baby Eva, a sweet, newborn baby daughter for Carrie and Tyler. And a sweet, precious grandbaby girl for us - our tenth grandchild - five girls, and five boys now. But really, a dozen grandchildren for us now, with two little ones that we will not be able to hold in our arms until we're in heaven with them.
My heart is overflowing with thanks and with joy for this priceless gift from God, little baby Eva - and also overflowing with love for our daughter and her husband. I am going about my days of helping Carrie, helping with Cruz, holding Eva, driving back and forth in the 30-minute drive to their home. Desiring to give the help that Carrie needs, and also the private, bonding moments that she needs as a new mother with her infant daughter. And always through these beginning days and weeks, part of my heart is with my daughter ~ as her heart is overflowing with love, bonding closely with her newborn daughter. I'm finding that it is difficult for me to concentrate on much else.
Carrie & Tyler were also blessed with another amazing gift ~ a record in photos of the birth of little Eva. Tyler and his friend Matt run a photography business together, and it was Tyler & Carrie's desire to have the magic of the birth recorded in photos. An amazing record of a miracle to treasure in their hearts for years to come ...
The two photos directly above are from their collection, as well as the ones below. (I've chosen just a few of their many, many photos to share here ... thanks, Tyler & Carrie, and also Matt, for giving me permission to use them here.)
Today, eight days later, my heart is still all wrapped up in the miracle of birth. And part of my heart continues to be with our daughter, and with her newborn daughter. I am loving every minute of helping with meals or with Cruz, or of listening to Carrie's overflowing heart, and of holding the priceless gift of little baby Eva.
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