When my niece, Ashley, asked me if I would want to be with her during the delivery of her third child, I was like “Yes! I was going to ask you if I could come.” Now don’t think me weird, but since I have never given birth, I thought it would be cool to see this miracle happen.
She asked me in the fourth or fifth month of what turned out to be a almost full term pregnancy. That meant for a good four months Ashley and I could have talked about what would be helpful for her in the delivery room. Like did she want me to hold her hand, or maybe rub her shoulder? Did she want me to get her ice chips or a cold washcloth for her forehead. Did we do that? Nope. In fact it really didn’t occur to me until I was sitting with her during the early morning on Wednesday, September 20th when I watched her have contractions. Oops…
Thankfully the staff at Akron General Hospital were amazing. They were helpful and encouraging and competent. They knew exactly how encouraging to be. Let me just say as a woman who has never given birth, as I was watching the process I was glad to have missed out on that opportunity. But…then in a moment, after what seemed like excruciating pain, one of the most beautiful beings ever created went from the womb to the world. Isabella Marion Strong entered into the world at 12:27 pm. And unlike other babies who need coaxing to cry, she let her presence be known right away.
Alright, it might be true that I am a little bias, I mean she is one of my my great nieces, but she is already amazing. For the first hour of her life, she laid skin to skin on her mommy’s chest. But did she just lay there? Nope. The little girl would lift her head up and try to look around. It was like she realized she wasn’t in Kansas anymore and needed to take in all the sites.
After the first hour, the nurse said others could hold her. I was the third family member to hold her. This little 7 lb, 13 oz bundle of joy, fresh from God, was falling asleep in my arms. I hope that doesn’t mean I am boring!
What I think is evident about Princess Isabella (which I am sure she will be known as), she definitely has a mind of her own already! When the nurse took her from her mom to measure her she made her displeasure known. There is no denying she comes from this family.
I was able to spend the first four and a half hours of her life with her. OK, I am not a complete baby hog, I did let her parents hold her some of the time. But every chance I had, I would hold her. Just something about holding her was so peaceful.
As I write this, she is four days old and I haven’t seen her today. My sister, Randi, and I went to visit her on her second evening in the hospital. While I don’t have pictorial proof, I did get to hold her some. Randi and I even sang her a little song as a lullaby. Isabella won’t remember, but it meant a lot to me.
As I think about how many months we waited to meet this precious little girl, it seemed like the day would never come. Now that she is here, I am eager to see the woman she grows into, although not too quickly.