The second one of the next generation. A great-grand.
At the hospital the evening after her birth, I receive her into my arms from her father. He is the first one I received of his generation. Firstborn of my firstborn.
She squirms as if to acknowledge I am neither mother nor father. So begin my efforts to erase the unfamiliarity.
I speak the words I’ve spoken to all new ones after her father–since I realized these first conversations are important. They set the tone for all that follows.
“Jesus loves you. Grandma loves you. You have a wonderful mommy and daddy.”
Her face is that of her grandmother–her Mimi–my daughter. This new one’s hair is darker than her sister’s–like an uncle’s–her father’s brother–like her Mimi’s. There is no other feeling to rival touching that soft hair.
I look around the room where she will stay for the next few days with her parents. The clear bassinet holds a pink knitted hat. My mind works to recall details from those days when I was a new mother–pieces that come in snapshots I’ve carried in my mind over the years.
This one’s parents are making their own mental snapshots.
We worried about her coming. A potential complication required close monitoring. We prayed. Others joined us in prayer.
But the coming was simple. Fast. She would come on her own, not via surgery as we had thought would happen. It seems she has her own mind already.
Mark Twain said, “The two most important days in your life are the day you are born and the day you find out why.”
But there is no one moment on one day that holds our purpose. We carry purpose with us every day. Why she has come to us will unfold over the years in multiple ways–in ways we can’t pin down to one moment. In ways we will never fully fathom.
Today she is here for us to hold and celebrate. To remind us that time passes quickly between that first moment holding a newborn and the others that follow.
The before and after and the moments between each new coming contain their own purposes. Their own wonder. Their own great times of struggle and triumph, fear and wonder. Prayers of pleading and prayers of gratitude and joy.
Welcome to this journey we call life, little one. We are so happy to have you on the path with us.