Saturday, July 12, 2008

What Joy


A little word meaning the beginning of life, but packed with so much more meaning than that. A couple of days ago, I wrote about death, the end of life, so I wanted to talk about a more pleasant subject on the opposite end of the spectrum.

On June 2nd, my newest grandson was born. Gavin Elliott was a couple of weeks early, but weighed in at 10 pounds 3 ounces and was 22 inches long. What joy a baby brings. The innocence, the promise of great things, a new beginning, just that soft skin and "baby smell" (no, I'm not talking diapers here!). It is even more joy for grandparents because there are no 3 a.m. feedings! He pretty much is skipping those now, anyway.

I don't think I am prejudice, but he is the cutest thing I have seen since my other grand kids were born many years ago - they are now 13, 13, and 10. And his Mom, Grandma and big brother agree with me.

A new birth can help take the sting away from death that sometimes surrounds us. This was clearly illustrated to me 35 years ago. My grandmother died the night before my youngest daughter was born. I was close to "Nanny" (or "Nan" as I called her as I got older) because we lived right next door to her until I was in the third grade. Then we moved less than 20 miles away so I saw her at least every week. As a teen with a driver's license, I would go to see her - a great excuse to drive the car, too. But then I went into the Air Force and was either mostly in Germany or Texas so we were a long way away and I only saw her about once a year or so, but we kept in touch through mail and phone. It hurt that I would not be able to go to her services, but the next day when Cindy was born, the hurt eased.

With all the passing of folks on my patient support site, we have also had what I perceive as an increase in posting of pictures of children and grandchildren, including many new babies, on the cllcfriends site. It helps to balance the hurt and pain and suffering of members. Precious new lives.

Cindy had a very rough time with this pregnancy. She had "morning sickness" throughout the entire pregnancy and not just in the morning. She is the one who previously had two heart surgeries and her heart started messing with her again about half way through. She went into premature labor about two or three months early, but they were able to stop it. The last two weeks before delivery, she had constant contractions that kept going between two minutes and five minutes apart with very little down time. She was hospitalized several times during the pregnancy and had to go to labor and delivery several times in the last couple of weeks only to be sent back home after a couple of hours. The last night she spent the night with us and at 6:30 a.m. I drove her to the hospital after her water broke. They couldn't send her home then. Corbin, her husband, is a driller in the oil fields and he was well over six hours away. He had to drive back from West Texas pulling his huge mobile home trailer behind him. The nurses didn't think he would make it in time, but he arrived a little less than an hour before Gavin was born. Good thing or I might have slapped him around! :)

All those troubles were forgotten once the precious gift from God arrived.
Gavin is advancing at a remarkable rate. At two weeks old he began turning over front to back. He smiles regularly now and it is not just when he has gas, because it is in response to stimuli. He is cutting two bottom teeth. He is only six weeks old, but I think he is starting kindergarten next week.
Karen, a lady who's blog I follow and who is listed over to the right as The Adventures of Cancer Girl, calls her little girl WCK (world's cutest kid). Sorry, Karen, but Gavin has stolen that title.

(By the way, if you have never been to Karen's site, it is well worth the read. She has one of the greatest senses of humor and the most wonderful writing style. When I am feeling down, I always get a smile reading her blog. To give you an idea, a recent entry title is, "Moose drool, wolf pups, bear poop." But if you go there, don't read just that one. One other note before I wrap this up. David E., the fellow with advanced prostate cancer whom I have referenced several times, is now undergoing chemotherapy as his other treatments stopped working. Please keep David and his family in your prayers.)

Well, what kind of grandfather would I be without pictures? Most of these were taken and sent via phone so they aren't the sharpest quality, but you can see how cute he is. So, enjoy!

A couple of hours old:

One day old:

Let me think about it, yep, I'm cute!

I'm in charge and don't forget it:

Brotherly love! Jonathan and Gavin sleeping. (Jonathan is almost 14)

Mother and son bonding:

Taken today


Deb Light said...

You are right John.He sure is a cutie!And somehow birth is a more uplifting subject than death although it shouldn't be.Death is a rebirth for Christians into eternal Bliss with all our saved relatives and friends!
Thanks for the post and again Congrats on your new kindergardener!!LOL!
God Bless,

Karen said...

He is beautiful!!!!! I suppose he and WCK could share the title. :)

David E said...

Welcome back my friend!!!

Thank you for the thoughts and prayer request as well!

Anonymous said...

How precious! I love babies. There is nothing sweeter than a baby fresh from the womb. Congratulations on your big grandson. Blessing to you and your family.