Author: Pastor Drenda Keesee | Posted: Thursday, August 2, 2012 - 4:00pm
No amount of preparation could really have gotten me ready to be a Grand-mama! My oldest daughter, Amy, had given me the honor of being her Matron of Honor in her wedding. Now, two and a half years later, she and her husband, Jason, had asked me to deliver our first grandbaby at our home! What a great blessing! I am no stranger to homebirths, so I rejoiced that they had chosen this, and I knew it would be special and fun to share our home for such a glorious occasion. How lovely!
We all stayed busy right up to the delivery, including Amy. The day before Amy’s water broke, I had gone into HomeGoods looking for a chair for my Grand-mama’s nursery. I told my husband, Gary, that if I could get the chair, we were ready! Excitedly, I found a beautiful chair in the unusual, exact fabric of our nursery bedding. Thrilled, I took it home and Amy and Jason were there to meet me. She said, “I want to go to Red Lobster for dinner.” (That’s the secret way I had to go into labor. It almost always worked. The midwife told me there is a reason for that!)
Sure enough, the following morning I woke to a text from Jason saying Amy’s water had broken at 4am. Wow! So Saturday, Sunday, and Monday, we had fun waiting. We laughed and told stories from the kids’ childhood while Amy was peaceful, breathed through a contraction here or there, danced to her father’s piano music like we did when they were children, and visited with her two sisters and I. There was peace, and laughter, and not the kind of pressure you might have in a hospital setting. (That’s a whole other topic!) Amy’s two brothers stopped in to visit her between church services Sunday, and I anxiously awaited the event everyone told me was life-changing: becoming a grandparent!!
Monday afternoon came and we were all so grateful for the gift of time—to stop the busyness and be together before this life-changing event. I truly believe it was God’s reward to us for being about His Kingdom. He always gives us just what we need when we need it. Now, we were ready! Amy stood on the trampoline and gently rocked. We took walks, and even a drive. And, on a drive Monday evening, Amy said she felt pressure. I knew what that meant! We headed back ready for the transition to push. Four and a half hours later, Journey Taylor was born. She was beautiful, alert, had a head full of black hair, and had her little hand up in the air over her ear. When I finally saw her, we cried tears of joy! She looked just like Amy!
Amy’s resolve, peace and womanhood were amazing. She was changed, and so were we. The mutual respect we had had for one another, and our friendship, had gone to another level. It only continues as I watch Amy lay her life down to be such an amazing mother.
Over the next week, I lost track of the days and nights as we coddled, adjusted, and learned the baby’s needs. As new daddy Jason said humorously, “We aren’t parents yet. Parents mentor and train. We’re the ones being trained by Journey.” We laughed. All the memories of sleepless nights, trying to settle to nurse, and changing diapers came flooding back. With a smile, Gary said, “It’s all coming back to me now.”
Jason and Amy went to their home, and we had to say goodbye and go back to busy lives again. I dropped by later for a little housekeeping visit. Then a morning later, I thought of another way to go see them. We texted, “Want us to bring breakfast? Dad’s waffles!” When we didn’t hear back in 15 minutes, we headed over on our motorcycle with breakfast in tins. They texted, “Sure!” just as we pulled in their drive.” Glad it wasn’t, “No thanks.”
Then, the moment I had been waiting for came. They came back over for a visit! Amy rested for three hours to recover from missed sleep, while I held little Miss Journey. She fell asleep in my arms, and I dared not move, so I sat with my iPhone in hand on reverse picture mode, capturing and watching her every movement. She’s awake. She’s asleep. She yawned. She’s asleep again. She’s waking up, I think. Waking up contentedly, she turned her head to look at me! She looked into my eyes. We gazed at each other. Our fixation went on and on. I was spellbound! She smiled! (Honestly! I have the picture to prove it! Actually, I have 50 to prove it!)
I was in love all over again. Memories flooded my heart and my mind. I started thinking of buying an RV to take her to see the world, just like we had dreamed with our own children. More thoughts, more dreams, more plans. Being a grandparent doesn’t just change you; it gives you a rebirth, a revival! I miss her right now! What excuse can I make to go see her?
On being a grandparent, my husband, Gary, said, “My perspective of seeing a child is different today than from my chaotic days of just trying to survive when we had our own children. I didn’t understand the sheer joy and priority of a child. I am thankful our children have a better grasp on family life and understanding than we had. I am also thankful to get the opportunity to experience the gift of a child all over again from a different perspective.”
If people tell you it’s great to be a grandparent, don't believe them.
It’s even better than that…