by Kari Pike
The phone rang. The clock blinked 1:15am. I fumbled the phone, trying to find the power button in the dark. I managed a froggy hello and listened as an excited father announced that his wife was in labor and they decided to go to the hospital. They would call me as soon as they got settled in labor and delivery. I mumbled a congratulations and fell back to my warm, soft pillow. Should I get up? Her last labor lasted almost thirty hours. I decided to rest a bit longer, knowing my doula bag lay packed and ready in the closet. Forty minutes later, the ring of the phone jerked me back awake.
"Kari! She's dilated to 8...and her water just broke! You better head over here right away!" I threw my clothes on, grabbed my bag and hustled to the hospital. Twenty minutes later, I ran into the delivery room just in time to hear the first cries of new life. I watched the joy and wonder on the faces of these new parents...even though they had been through this experience before. I felt humble and grateful for the invitation to be a witness to this miraculous event.
Thirty hours later, the phone rang again. "Congratulations, Grandma! You have a new grandson!" Ezra Kreed Anderson came into the world a perfect 7# 10 oz and nearly 20 inches long. I packed and cleaned and stomped out fires until at last I found myself in a little thirty seater prop plane, soaring through the big skies of Colorado and Wyoming. The 6 passengers and the flight attendant laughed and joked about the thrill of flying in the "Vomit Comet." The biggest thrill for me was pulling up to the little airport terminal in Laramie and spying my grandchildren with their hands and faces plastered against the glass of the big picture window overlooking the airstrip.
"Those are my grandkids!" I proudly announced to the other passengers. When I walked into the terminal, the grans welcomed me with multiple hugs and shouts and smiles. Holding little Ezra brought flashbacks of holding my own newborn babies; the sweet scent, the soft skin and hair, the warmth of his tiny little body snuggled into my shoulder. It never gets old, this welcoming new life into the world. I never knew you could love another child as much as the ones you gave birth too. It is and always will be a miracle.