My three daughters and two sons-in-law gathered at our house to celebrate my husband’s 59th birthday back in March.
We planned to get together with extended family for a dinner later that day, but it was Saturday morning and the girls wanted their dad to open his birthday gifts.
So, he opened them and, since this was the first time he had seen them since his February accident, he was a little emotional when he found the cash they had stashed in one of the packages.
My oldest daughter filmed it, but put her video camera away when he was done. It was a nice little moment.
Then our middle daughter, Tanya, started to say, “Jon and I have an announcement to make … ” and my mind ran ahead because it could only mean one thing.
“We’re expect …” and I don’t think I even left her finish her sentence before I was at least a foot off the floor, maybe more.
A baby! Our first grandchild!
It was a thought I had barely allowed myself to have, because I know that sometimes even couples who want to have children are unable.
It was probably a good thing my oldest had put her video camera away.
While I was probably the only one screaming, we were all kind of laughing and everyone was excited and joyous. Our youngest daughter, who lives in the same city, was especially happy because she will be nearby.
The happy couple is expecting sometime in September. They showed us the obligatory ultrasound photo; it’s almost too wonderful to get my head around.
Grandma. I can barely bring myself to try on the word, which belongs to someone old, faithful in prayer and sometimes downright silly and immature.
Wait. I guess I’m all those things, depending on the situation. And I’m past needing to feel young and beautiful and all that — those who love me appreciate me the way I am.
This child, Tanya, was born May 6, so I spent Mother’s Day 1983 in the hospital with her and still have the dining tray napkin for Mother’s Day.
Yes, I’m sentimental. It was also graduation weekend at the local university. Party-going revelers kept me from getting much-needed sleep; my labor with her was very long.
The hospital at that time was practically on top of the university. I do remember hearing loud kids outside. Ironically, she was the daughter who ended up graduating from that hometown university 22 years later on Mother’s Day weekend. Time flies.
It will be fun to go through pregnancy again through the eyes of my daughter — hearing about her worries, her request to finally read my pregnancy devotional book, “For the Next Nine Months: Meditations for Every Day of Pregnancy,” hearing about her jeans getting too snug, doctor visits, prenatal vitamins and things that have changed since we had our babies (and the things that haven’t).
She couldn’t imagine, for instance, having to figure out how to tell her husband like I did. Jon was by her side to view the result of their home pregnancy test.
I catch myself clapping my hands at odd moments, just so elated. We are so grateful, thankful and full of prayer for the well-being of our first grandchild.
We know there are still a lot of hurdles to cross. A child is a gift. Motherhood and fatherhood are gifts. Thanks be to God. We hold this precious time of anticipation and waiting in our hearts.
For a free copy of one of my books on parenting, write for Working, Mothering and other “Minor” Dilemmas. Send to Another Way, Box 22, Harrisonburg, VA, 22803 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Another Way is a column from MennoMedia by Melodie Davis. She is the author of nine books, most recently Whatever Happened to Dinner and has written Another Way since 1987. She also keeps a blog at www.FindingHarmonyBlog.com.