Saturday, March 29, 2014

The day I became a grandmother

That's weird.  Writing that title.  It's weird.

Last summer when we left comfortable and headed north we returned a month later to close on our house in Tennessee and move the last of our belongings.  It happened to be my husband's birthday and our children planned a surprise party for him.  But the surprise was on both of us when our daughter and SIL announced to us that they were expecting their first child.

The birthday gift was the prop for the "reveal."

As excited as we all were, my next thoughts were, "I knew it.  I knew as soon as we left, someone would get pregnant and we'd be 700 miles away.  Grrr,"  I silently said to the One who makes the trees.  But it all worked out.  Thanks to awesome technology my daughter took weekly pictures of her growing belly and with a few visits in-between during her pregnancy, it didn't feel like we missed anything.

I was able to "attend" a baby shower via Face Time in January, but I did bawl my eyes out after I hung up, pulled out the pity party tea cups for a little bit, and then moved on.  Slowly, slowly my eyes see God showing His kindness to me as we've left what we knew to journey back to where we started.

We all got to "be" at the pre-reveal party and cast our votes for boy or girl.

And the actual reveal party we were watching as everyone else found out what they were having.

It's a boy!

But anyway, here's how the day I became a grandmother went.

On Sunday evening, March 16th, I got home from work, putzed around on Words with friends, candy crush, Facebook, email, you know....putzed.  Spoke to my husband and daughters who were all together anticipating the arrival of someone special.  My youngest daughter and husband, English teachers both, were spending their spring break at Preggo daughter's house hoping that baby would decide to come while they were on break.  (We were all selfishly praying he would come either the 17th or the 18th, he wasn't due till the 19th, but we even got ladies from the expectant parent's church to pray specifically for the 17th or 18th! LOL).  Selfish, I know, but those days were the most conducive to lots of work schedules and other spring activities put on hold until his arrival.

My plan was to work on Monday and then get up Tuesday morning and make the drive to Memphis and join the waiting club there.  Each day I went to work my coworkers said to me, "you're still here?"  Ugh.  "Yes," I said, "still here."  I'd leave at the end of my shift with the line, "I hope I don't see you tomorrow, but I probably will."

Sunday after work was no different.

I had already set up a staging area of things that would need throwing in the car when the CALL did eventually come; all that remained was to throw my suitcase together with them and jump in the car.

At 3:13 Monday morning, March 17th, my husband's ringtone was waking me up.  When I answered he said my daughter and her husband were at the hospital and they were keeping her, she was at 3cm.  So I jumped out of bed and started getting ready to go, thinking to myself, it's her first, it will take awhile, don't kill yourself getting there.

4:28am:  Call to my husband with a verbal checkoff of things done.  Shut off the breakers to the water pump and hot water heater.  Check.  Turned down the heat.  Check.  My husband was on his way to the hospital because our laboring daughter needed a fan.  He was stopping at Walmart to get a battery operated fan.  The girl had a check list a mile long and her bag packed for weeks and no one told her she might need a fan???

I had purchased a dashboard mount for my phone so that I could do FaceTime on the drive down, which I thought I was doing on Tuesday, but it came in handy for hands free driving too.  I got periodic updates from my husband as to what was going on, the gas pedal was a little bit closer to the floor than usual, and I was making good time.  The calculations I was doing in my mind had me arriving around 4pm so I thought I would probably miss the delivery but I shouldn't miss too much else.  No one but daddy was going to be in the delivery room, so I thought I would have lots of time.  I was still going to keep the gas pedal a little closer to the floor, but I didn't need to kill myself or others getting there.  Or so I thought.

5:59 am:  I am at a gas station in Beloit, WI, just a hop, skip and a jump north of the Illinois border, pumping gas when a text from my husband came in:  8cm, this could be soon!

5:59 and a few seconds later:  Gas nozzle in the tank, I start bawling.  "I'm going to miss EVERYTHING!" I cried out to the Lord.

I finished pumping my gas, went in the McDonald's to use the restroom and get a breakfast sandwich, trying not to cry in front of the sweet cashier  behind the counter.  I got it together, got over my woe is me attitude, and said to the cashier, "I'm going to be a grandmother today!"

She got all tickled for me, saw I was near tears and said, "Drive carefully.  You'll get there just in time."

The gas pedal got a little bit more closer to the floor.

Throughout the normally 11 1/2 hour drive down I got periodic updates as to what was going on.  As fast as we thought things were going, they started to slow down.  My daughter was able to get an epidural and we were able to FaceTime while she was laboring.

The texts came in (yes I was driving, but the phone was mounted on my dashboard) updating me as to what was going on and in the nervousness of both my husband and I his words would be misspelled and the simple "K" I would attempt to text back, carefully, would be "L" or "M".

The long story short of my daughter's personal labor is hers to share, not mine, but all I can say is  my grandson knew his Bibby was on his way, so he just hung out in Momma's belly waiting for me to get there.

12:33:  Text from hubby.  Baby's crowing.  (LOLOLOL - crowning).

1:01:  Getting gas, waiting to hear, wondering why I hadn't heard anything, what the heck was going on, something must have happened and they're afraid to call me because I'm driving.....

1:01pm:  He's here, 1258.

She did it!

The gas pedal got a little closer to the floor again.  When I made it to the hospital, finally, my husband had just held our grandson less than an hour before I got there.  I hadn't missed anything.

He's here.  And he's awesome.  So proud of my girl.  And so thankful to the One who makes the trees.

Ezekiel James
7 lb. 11 oz.
21 1/4 in.


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