Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Our Little Cookie

A little more than three weeks ago, our Grace was born. It was a beautiful Sunday morning, full of quiet sunshine. As we drove over the bridge to the Birth Center, Chad told me to open my eyes and look at the sun on the ocean. It made diamonds on the surface.

Almost two hours later, she was born, in the water. We laughed and we cried at the same time; holding on to each other, we held her for hours before they weighed her and measured her and covered her tiny feet in ink.

I had thought about those moments for so, so long, since back when she was just an idea. Those moments were more beautiful than I was prepared for. It just felt like it happened the way it was supposed to: during my labor, Susan, one of the midwives, said we would have a morning baby and a Sunday baby, and "Sunday's baby is full of grace." Susan didn't know Grace was one of our name choices. We didn't even know she was a she. But Grace, she was.

Our daughter's birth was beautiful. But one thing surprised me. Grace was placed in my arms, kicking and yelling, eyes closed, slippery and wet. I couldn't have loved her any more at that moment. But I had never seen her before. I didn't recognize her face. And I thought I should have; hadn't she been the one with her foot in my ribs, wasn't she the one who pummeled my insides when she was hungry, who got the hiccups at least once a day? How could I not recognize her?

Hours later, we were alone in our room, in the quiet dark, as we had been so many nights together. She was asleep in my arms. And then she sneezed, and then she hiccuped. And she hiccuped again. And I started to cry. I had known those hiccups for so many months. She really was my Grace.

No longer a part of me, she is her own person. She has become her own person more and more every day, and she will do great things. I don't know what those things will be, but they will happen the way they are supposed to. With diamonds and hiccups and grace.

Grace Lennon Cotter
July 31, 2011
9:43 AM
7 pounds, 8 ounces
19 inches long

(taken by Kaela Tierney)

(taken by Kaela Tierney)