jackiehaugh.com
A Work of Heart
At the sound of a text at 4:00 a.m., I jumped out of bed ready to run out the door. I’d only gotten five hours of sleep, but this was one event I refused to be late for. “Oh my God!” my daughter Jenni mumbled, waking up in the bed next to mine. “Not only did you sleep in your clothes, but you still have your makeup and earrings on.” “I wanted to be ready,” I replied, in eager anticipation. “You just never know when these things will happen.” What was supposed to be a mother/daughter bonding experience the previous Friday with my third daughter Lauren, filled with girl talk, manis and pedis, as well as a hardy lunch, turned into something quite different. My grandson was now a week late, and at Lauren's doctor’s appointment that morning, it was determined he needed to be induced. Racing to the hospital, I basically moved in with the excited couple, announcing I was there to help but selfishly not wanting to miss a moment. Thank goodness my son-in-law Tyler is a very patient man when it comes to grandmothers-to-be on steroids. Soon the other family members arrived, and by Saturday night there was a full-blown party in true Haugh fashion in the hospital room. But by midnight, with Lauren still at only six centimeters, it was decided the new parents should get some rest and that we’d be notified when she got to 9 centimeters. “Lauren said it could take another two hours. We don’t need to rush,” Jenni informed me, with an effort to pump my brakes. But I was not to be deterred. “You can come later with the others if you want, but I’m going now.” Also not wanting to miss anything, Jenni joined me, and together we wove our way back to Kaiser Hospital on the blackened streets of San Francisco, only running a stop sign or two. A couple hours later, the rest of the entourage arrived, salivating over who’d be the first to hold him. At 7:29 a.m. on Sunday, August 26th, my exquisite grandson, G. Bowen Neville (Baby Bo), came into this world a healthy 9 pounds, 21 inches long and resembling a Rembrandt cherub. I’d often been told by friends, “Just you wait! Being a grandparent is the greatest thing ever. You get all the fun without any of the responsibility.” Holding my grandson for the very first time, emotion surged over me so strongly, much like a tidal wave—powerful and life-altering. I adored being a mother, and I was now being given the opportunity to play a part in another child’s life. Oh, the things I wanted to teach him. But as the days drifted by, a new sensation much more powerful blanketed me: my daughter was no longer my little girl. She was now a mother too. Watching Lauren bond with her baby with gentle cooing and soft embraces when he wailed, the late-night feedings and patience as she nursed, and the look of adoration each time she held him in her arms confirmed to me that this child was a work of art by God’s grace—but he was also much more. He was a work of heart. This baby was planned for, wanted, and deeply loved by his parents long before he entered this world. Of course, my new role as Grammie is amazing, but my true delight comes from knowing my child will be forever lovingly changed just as I was with her birth. While Tyler and Lauren longed for and desired him to join their family, Bo’s little soul looked down from heaven and chose them to be his parents. Together, they’ll create their own life's masterpiece, a true work of heart.