Reflections from a New Grandmother

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My first grandchild was born on May 29, and he made quite an entrance into the world! Landon Wallace Morgan was born to my daughter Katie and her husband Curt. I’m so in love with that little boy already.

I felt extremely blessed when Katie and Curt invited me to join them at the hospital and share the birth experience with them. None of us envisioned the adventure awaiting us! Katie labored for 28 ½ hours, when all of a sudden, things took a turn for the worse. Her blood pressure skyrocketed, and the baby’s heart rate started dropping. Before we knew it, an entire medical team poured into the room to prepare Katie for an emergency C-section. Landon was born at 2:24 a.m., weighing in at 8 pounds, measuring 20 ½ inches, and looking around intently at the people who already loved him.

The Lord taught me a great deal through that rollercoaster experience of terror and joy, suffering and triumph. It’s difficult to put it all into words, but here is my attempt:

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The Lord sees us through.

When they wisked my daughter and son-in-law into the operating room, I looked around at the empty labor room. Medical supplies were scattered all over the floor. The monitors that once contained images and sounds of my grandson’s heartbeat and my daughter’s vital signs were now silent and still. It looked like a war zone. Indeed, now the battle for two lives had moved into another room.

I felt a small undercurrent of fear try to take hold, but something greater repelled it. I could feel the presence of the Lord, and His strength and His love held me in that place. I knew He was with Katie, Curt, and Landon in the operating room too.

I knew the Lord had seen us through to the point of birth. It is very difficult to watch someone you love suffer as my daughter did during labor. Her pain medications wore off several times during delivery, and the medical staff struggled to manage her pain. I felt blessed to be able to encourage, help, and advocate for her, and I was overwhelmed by her bravery and courage during a very long labor. I know the Lord helped her through that time too.

Katie’s husband Curt was so kind and encouraging toward Katie as she labored. He stayed right by her side, took care of her, and loved her through the pain. To me, he was such a picture of how Jesus never leaves us or forsakes us (Hebrews 13:5), and how He goes through the fire with us (Daniel 3:24-25).

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Prayer makes an impact.

Prior to Landon’s birth, I had asked many people to pray for him, Katie, and the birth process. My 7 brothers and sisters, their spouses, my parents, my husband’s parents, my husband’s brothers and wives, my Sunday School class members, my Bible Study group, my prayer partners, my close friends, and of course, my husband and children . . . we had lots of people praying. I was texting to many of these people during the delivery, with updates and prayer requests.

I was overwhelmed by the sense of community that developed from those texts. People stayed up with us into the wee hours of the morning, watching and praying. My dear mother got on her knees and told me she refused to get up until she knew that everyone was okay. Other friends told me they were on their knees too. Still others sent me encouraging texts, full of scripture and kind words. Others communicated, “I’m here for you.”

All that prayer did something in the heavenlies . . . and in my heart. Grace, peace, and love entered into that traumatic birth experience on the wings of those prayers. Prayer binds us together (Matthew 8:20), touches the heart of God (Revelation 8:4), and creates an impact on earth (James 5:16). Prayer invites the power and presence of God into our battles.

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Joy comes in the morning.

After all the difficulty and suffering, after all the pain, a beautiful baby boy came into our lives. As they were wheeling Katie back into the labor room where I was waiting, she said, “It was all worth it!” She then pulled back the covers on her bed and introduced me to my first grandson. As I held him in my arms, joy washed over me like a flood. A deep love replaced the earlier trauma. Gratitude and rejoicing poured forth from my heart.

Katie’s nurse for much of her labor was named Joy. She exuded that quality and became a steadfast friend through much of Katie’s labor. Looking back, her name announced what was to come. Joy literally came in the morning as the scriptures promise (Psalm 30:5). Joy arrived in the form of a new life that will be part of our family.

Landon radiates joy himself. He smiles all the time, and he makes others smile. The Lord authored all the attributes of this little man, and he is wonder to behold (Psalm 139:13-14).

I know that not all birth experiences result in joyful endings like ours. My heart aches for those who have lost babies or encountered major medical issues after birth. Our experience made me much more sensitive to what can and often does happen to others. My prayer is that the Lord would give those families the joy and peace that He promises, and that only He can give (Nehemiah 8:10; John 14:27). Lord, have mercy.

“You have turned my mourning into joyful dancing. You have taken away my clothes of mourning and clothed me with joy” (Psalm 30:11, NLT).  Only He can give “a crown of beauty for ashes, a joyous blessing instead of mourning, and festive praise instead of despair” (Isaiah 61:3, NLT).

He did this for me at 2:24 a.m. on May 29. He will do the same for you.

Question: How has the Lord brought joy from a difficult situation in your life? Comment at the link below.

Susan Jane King

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