Monday, August 13, 2012

Birth Cries

"A baby is God's opinion that life should go on."  Carl Sandberg

That early morn in the hospital while lying in my bed I heard it, the first cry.  Meeting the air was the voice of a child that was once held tight, safe within the mother's womb. In my room, I sighed and held back tears.  I couldn't cry.  Drainage bags and stitches prevented even the slightest of movements.  Here I was, in the hospital to which most people come to give birth in Asia.  I was there for a specialized surgery.  The irony of my situation and the plight which it could create was heavy on my heart. 

That cry in the early hours of dawn.  The one I knew which I might never hear of my own child.  Yet what a miracle to hear the life of another beginning just a few doors down the hall! This is how the poem (See post below) came to me in the midst of my own hour of pain.  There are things that I will never fully understand. Yet, life goes on.

In retrospect, I can see what a miracle my own child is.
I am thankful for the quiet night hours and feedings.
I am tired.  I'll be honest, it is difficult at 30-something to be as energetic as I was at 20-something.
But I am oh, so blessed. 

I witnessed the preparation for my own surgery in Asia.  I was lying on a cold stainless steel table.  Directions were given to me in Chinese.  The last thing I remember before the pain was feeling like I was suffocating.  They didn't explain that going under anesthesia would feel like that.  A few seconds before that happened, I had centered my thoughts on what mattered.  I knew if I went to sleep, I went to sleep in Jesus.  And I would wake in His faithfulness, one way or another.  

Birth, she told me, was a natural process.  "Work with your body.  You must be free from fear."  But that mark, the mark of surgery.  It said in the surgeon's notes from Asia that the tumor was attached to the main blood supply of my uterus.  My doctor told me we needed to be prepared in case of rupture, and that if that place of weakness gave way he would have 5 minutes to spare my life and the life of my baby.  My place of birth would be right next to the operating room.

He entered the world quietly, just as I wished he would.  I was quiet, but in my mind I was running a race.  "I can do this," I told myself.  Heart monitors bleeped, people came in and out.  But my eyes were closed and my mind was aware.  This baby, mine, he will come.  My hope was to see him grow, and not end up in the operating room. But I wanted to be grace-filled even if I ended up on the operating table.

My doctor's calm face gave me courage.  A team of people entered the room, and a short time later, he was born.  Relief.  Joy. Calm. Hope. This boy of mine was born.  Blood mingled with water and sweat.  A small piece of eternity, a soul, entered the world.  His tiny cry was calmed by my voice. He nuzzled his head up next to my heart with his little body in a ball.  I was speechless, tearless.  The awe and miracle of his life, the genuine gratitude I felt for being able to experience being a part of this life-giving process, even if it was just once. And life goes on.

He is not mine.  But I will forever thankful to be his Mom.

Do you let you kids know what miracles they are?  How do you remind them of this day-to-day?  


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  2. Well, you know how we celebrate our miracles! Each night when we tuch them into bed, whether it was a stellar day or a day filled will small disasters. We pray with our kids, remind them that God loves them no matter what, tuck them in, shut off the light, and have a race! A race that reminds us that life is precious and each breath is a miracle. A race to say... "Guess what... you are a MIRACLE!" It's a tradition that I hope lives in our home for a very long time. And a tradition that I hope that they, someday, pass on to their children! Who says the world isn't filled with miracles?!?


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