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A day for miracles

[1]Journal notes from Traveln’ with Charlie Blog [2],

I witnessed a miracle, an amazing reminder of how very loved we are, how beautiful our creation is, and how precious life is. My grandson, Jesse John, was born around 6:20 p.m. He is the living sign of love between his parents, my son Karl and his wife De Anna. His birth is the culmination of the love Karl’s father, John, and I shared that brought Karl into the world almost 26 years ago. Nearly five years after John died in an accident, his legacy continues through his children and now, a grandson.

While I was in the birthing room with Dee pushing, Karl coaching and their friend Cathy also supporting, amid a huge troop of nurses and doctors, I couldn’t help tearing up a bit. It was a very poignant reminder of how much John would have loved to see his grandson. I remember how pleased and excited he was at the birth of both Kristin and Karl. He would have been the proudest grandpa in the world. It would have been so wonderful to share this exciting event with him, to revel in the fruits of our love for each other, instead of coming home to only a dog, even if he is a great dog.

But at the same time there was a recognition that this little boy carries his father’s blood and therefore his grandfather’s blood. Even though John wasn’t there, his spirit was undoubtedly there and I have every confidence that John will be watching over his grandson from Heaven. And a part of John lives on through his son and grandson. That is a special blessing, knowing that we live on through those we love, not only in memory but in blood, as well.

Weighing in at just 5 pounds, 6 ounces, Jesse’s a skinny guy, but at nearly 20 inches is in the 90th percentile for length. His fingers are long and slender, his legs long and very slender. He has no fat on his bones but everything else is there — ten fingers, ten toes, a darling little nose and ears sweet as rose petals. His pink bow of a mouth is perfect and while he has a good strong cry, we haven’t heard it very often. A sweet, contented baby, it seems.

Jesse was born a month early because his mother De Anna was experiencing preeclampsia and her blood pressure was spiking. After about 14 hours of observation in the hospital her doctors decided to induce labor about 10 hours after that he was born. Jesse’s daddy, Karl, was born a month early also, weighing in at 5 pounds, 14 ounces. He is now about 6’3” and around 240 pounds, I think. Kristin, Jesse’s aunt, was three weeks early but weighed just five pounds. Little babies are so sweet.

Karl is absolutely awestruck by this wonderful child who has come into his life. Clearly he is in love. He was beaming all day yesterday and today when I went to visit them. He is so cute and excited and nervous and worried. He will be a fabulous father; I have no doubts. Dee has three boys already — her middle son, Asher, who is six — is in one of the pictures with his new brother. She is much more relaxed, though Jesse is smaller than any of her other boys were. She will be as good a mother to him as she is with her other boys. And I hope to be a happy and fulfilled grandmother who will spoil my grandson with every good thing I can, totally shower him with love and homemade cookies.

It is amazing how the birth of a tiny, helpless baby touches us all in tender places we sometimes forget we have. They are so precious, so fragile. And so very easy to love. Their little heads — as soft and sweet and fuzzy as a ripe peach — beg to be kissed and caressed. Their tiny fingers grasp ours, and their little mouths kiss the air, spreading love to all around them. They come from love, are the result of love. It is hard to hold a newborn baby and not think of our God who came to us as a child to share life with us, to be one of us. Every child is a reminder that we are incredibly beloved by God.

Jesse was the Biblical father of David. It was from his line — the root of Jesse — that Jesus was descended. His name, according to my friend Barb whose son is also named Jesse, means “of God.” Truly this child is a special gift from God, a reminder that we are loved abundantly, tremendously, more than we can ever imagine.