It’s a big day today, people! A day that calls for brass bands and balloons, military flyovers and cheering crowds, a dance around the kitchen and a one woman parade to the Krispy Kreme drive thru –and that’s all before I change out of my pajamas!
Something HUUUUUUGE is happening and it’s finally time to talk about it!
It just might be the best news you’ll have this whole entire day! For me, it’s the greatest news any human being ever created, even counting fake news, which this isn’t! It’s news that even God him/herself is rejoicing over!
YES! Those are baby booties! On my daughter’s crossed legs. Booties that will go on actual baby feet that will belong to a real human baby that my daughter will give birth to! Her very own self! Hurray for Sarah and the baby to be!
Oh! And we should take a collective breath and remember that my son-in-law has a part in this also. Yay for Paul!
But why are we celebrating today, you ask?
WHAT BETTER DAY IS THERE THAN TODAY TO THROW AROUND CONFETTI AND HOP UP AND DOWN OVER SOME GOOD NEWS?
Plus, today marks the official end of Sarah’s first trimester, so I’m finally allowed to blab about it as much as I want to, after much too much time having to keep my joy from exploding out my ears or shooting out my nose in an ecstatic sneeze.
Weeks ago when Sarah told me she was pregnant, we were still reeling from the election. (Maybe you feel the same way or maybe you don’t but it’s part of the story, so sit tight.) We cheered a little and then she made me stop. “I’m trying not to get too excited yet,” she said. I understood. Sarah had already suffered a miscarriage in the spring and she was scared. “And I guess it’s not the best time to have a baby,” she said. “You know- after the election.”
“What are you talking about?” I said. “Donald Trump isn’t going to raise this baby! You and Paul are. It’s the perfect time to have a baby!”
The more I’ve thought about this, the more convinced I am that I’m right! (At least this time!) Maybe I’m one wise Grandma or LaLa or Mama Becky or whatever I happily become!
“So,” you ask, “why on earth is it a perfect time to bring a child into the world?”
Sarah and the rest of you, I’ll tell you why. I’ll even make you a list of reasons.
(If you don’t know me, I’m not trying to be Pollyanna about this, but I have hope that ultimately people will respond in ways that will move us forward. I really do believe that.)
1. No matter what happens with presidents or the way their policies affect people’s lives, the earth and everything that’s in it is full of astounding beauty! Because you love your child, you will want to show that to her. But ha ha ha on you because your child will take over and show it to you! Your child will be the beauty and wonder expert! Children are masters at this. They can’t help it. Maybe it’s being fresh from God’s hands. She will show you beauty and she’ll show it to everyone else she meets. Do we need more awareness of beauty in this world (which is really awareness of God)? YES WE DO!
Oh, and I’m referring to the baby as she, but that’s just for simplicity’s sake. I’ll be over the moon whether Baby is a she or he- OVER THE MOON AND THE STARS AND PLUTO, WHETHER IT’S A PLANET OR NOT!
2. Sarah, people are saying that this is the best time to be the church, and I think they’re right! This is the time for people of faith to speak up on the behalf of the oppressed- refugees, the poor, the sick, the disabled and marginalized. Your child will see and hear you and Paul speaking up and will know how important that is. I bet she’ll start speaking up as soon as she gets her little person voice, like her mama did. Do we need more speaking up in this world? YES WE DO!
3. Today we’re more connected than ever, so your baby will be able to learn from people all over the world. This will inform who she is and therefore who we are, as people who interact with her. You’ll help her hear voices from people of different nationalities and faiths, colors and genders, sexual orientations and backgrounds. I know you and Paul will teach your child that all these people are children of God, to be respected and treasured, just as your child is treasured by all of us already, and by God! Do we need more treasuring and respect in this world? YES WE DO!
4. Sarah, one good thing about this election and the backlash of President Obama’s time in office is that people like you and me are finally beginning to understand the privilege that comes with our skin color. I’m sad that it has taken so long for me to really hear it in my bones and to have the conversations with others that help me grow, but at least it is beginning to happen. Your child will grow into a world where people are listening more and hearing more. Do we need more listening and understanding about the differences in our experiences as Americans? YES WE DO!
5. Whenever there is a movement to limit voices or squash opposition, the artists let loose! Maybe I’m wrong, but I have a feeling that the arts are going to thrive the next few years, public funding or no, and your child will have her beginnings right in the middle of all that flourishing! This will enliven the creativity of all of us and it will bubble through her as well. Do we need more creativity in this world? YES WE DO!
6. Honey, do you remember when you were little, how I used to make you hug relatives, even when you didn’t want to? One good thing that has come from this election- even though it has made me want to wretch – is that we’ve had to talk about the importance of consent. Parents and grandparents-to-be are now realizing how important it is to teach that to children, in non-sexual situations too. I’m sorry about the forced hugging. I promise to be respectful of my grandchild. I know you’ll teach your child that her body belongs to her- and that will help her feel her own power- the power that God gives us to be the best person we can be and make the best world we can make, with God’s help. Do we need more power for good in this world? YES WE DO!
7. Your child will be kind because you and Paul are kind, and anyone growing up in a house where the air is thick with kindness can’t help but have it soak through their skin and pulse through their veins. The world needs your child’s kindness, so Baby will arrive in perfect timing. Do we need more kindness in the world? YES WE DO!
8. Babies come at the best of times and at the worst of times. Whenever they come, they make that time better. Your sweet baby will be surrounded by people who will love her and want to celebrate that love in every move she makes. And in loving her, your love will grow! Doesn’t this world need more love? YES IT DOES!
Sarah, I adore you and learn from you, still. Thank you for bringing a baby to us, just when the world needs her (OR HIM!) most!
Your mama, Lala, Grandma, Granny, or Mama Becky, whatever I happily become!
Image: Question Mark Graffiti by Bilal Kamoon