Twelve Days Ago
Author’s Note: I have to tell you, I wrote this post five years ago. On the threshold of our boy Graham’s fifth birthday, I cast it out on the webwaves again, hoping that it inspires you to think back on the births of your own babies, grandbabies, or others who have impacted your life in the same profound way that this little guy has impacted mine. Enjoy.
Twelve days ago, my day begins like any other.
Since we’re expecting nine attendees for new-employee orientation, I get an early start at work. I will, no doubt, complete several little projects beforehand. I also need to check my supply of deliverables so I can be prepared when my time comes to speak.
Though I won’t be responsible for the entire three-day orientation session, I’ll play my part.
It always amazes me, how many voicemails and e-mails I can receive in the two hours or so it takes to walk our newbees through the company’s history and mission, our benefits, our focus on safety, and the like.
Before I know it, my scheduled orientation time arrives.
Earlier, I received the physical results on all of our new hires, save one; I wonder if I could quickly get those missing results now, before heading over to the orientation meeting room.
No good. I leave a voicemail message for the people who do the physicals.
Though I arrive on time, to serve my piece of the orientation pie, the previous speaker has not yet completed his portion. No problem. It’ll give me a few minutes to check…oh! I left something on my desk, something I’ll need for my presentation. Off to my office again.
Gone for 10 minutes and my phone’s voicemail light is already winking at me. Maybe it’s the return message from the occupational health clinic, telling me my last employee’s “drug screen is negative…cleared for full duty.” I have a second to check, right?
The voice of my daughter greets me. “Hello, Anna Bradfield. This is Amber. I just wanted to let you know that I’m on my way to the hospital. I think I’m in labor. Give me a call. Thanks. I love you.”
Calm. Steady. Confident.
This can’t be. Amber’s due date isn’t until June 29. The doctor scheduled a c-section for June 23 so she wouldn’t go into labor, due to some delivery complications she incurred with Lincoln two years before. Yet a quick call confirms the original message.
Amber promises she’ll get in touch with me when she knows more.
I call her another three times on my walk back over to orientation.
“Amber, are they still planning a c-…”
“Amber, if they say they’re going to keep you…”
“Amber, what about Lincoln…”
She finally cuts in. “Mom, just remember. No matter what happens, everything’s going to be fine.”
Funny. She should be the one freaking out. I should be the calm one.
Twelve days ago, I had no idea my daughter would deliver vaginally, allowing me the opportunity to stay in the room while Graham Jackson pushed his way into the world. Posterior, no less.
Twelve days ago, I had no idea what our boy would look like:
- That his head would be covered with a shock of black hair, an inch and a half long
- That he would weigh nine pounds and measure 20 inches
- That he would look just like his mother as a baby, when he slid out with the amniotic fluid
- That he would like nothing more than to be held, to be cuddled
- That he would grow out of his newborn clothes so quickly
- That he would love to sleep all day and keep Momma and Daddy up all night
- That his toes would curl like a monkey’s on a branch
- That he would burp best when his back was rubbed
Today, I can’t imagine life without our little guy or his brother Lincoln. If someone showed me a two page spread, like Where’s Waldo?, and my job was to find Graham’s sweet face among the sea of other pudgy baby faces, I would find him in an instant. If he would ever be in danger, I would throw myself in the way, to spare him.
This is just a glimpse, just a foreshadowing of the vast love God has for us. Psalm 139 reads, in part:
and you know me.
2 You know when I sit and when I rise;
you perceive my thoughts from afar.
3 You discern my going out and my lying down;
you are familiar with all my ways.
4 Before a word is on my tongue
you, LORD, know it completely.
5 You hem me in behind and before,
and you lay your hand upon me.
6 Such knowledge is too wonderful for me,
too lofty for me to attain.
Where can I flee from your presence?
8 If I go up to the heavens, you are there;
if I make my bed in the depths, you are there.
9 If I rise on the wings of the dawn,
if I settle on the far side of the sea,
10 even there your hand will guide me,
your right hand will hold me fast.
11 If I say, “Surely the darkness will hide me
and the light become night around me,”
12 even the darkness will not be dark to you;
the night will shine like the day,
for darkness is as light to you.
13 For you created my inmost being;
you knit me together in my mother’s womb.
14 I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made;
your works are wonderful,
I know that full well.
15 My frame was not hidden from you
when I was made in the secret place,
when I was woven together in the depths of the earth.
16 Your eyes saw my unformed body;
all the days ordained for me were written in your book
before one of them came to be.
Can you fathom it? Can you grasp it? Are you worth the delight God experiences when he thinks of you?
Yes. Yes. A thousand times yes.Your Inspiration Prompt: Until next time, tell us about a birth that inspired you.
Share your thoughts in the Comments section.
photo credit: <a href=”http://www.flickr.com/photos/51868421@N04/11089765703″>Long Live Life: Reflecting on the Novartis mission</a> via <a href=”http://photopin.com”>photopin</a> <a href=”https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-nd/2.0/”>(license)</a>
About Anna Bradfield
Anna Bradfield has been spinning tales, exaggerating the truth, and flat-out lying almost as long as she could talk. Nowadays, though, she calls it fiction. Buy her ebooks, Hey Grampa! or Barnyard Babies today. Join the online community and receive a free copy of her ebook, Boy Crazy.