A mother watches in awe as her own daughter becomes a mom.
At 8:33 p.m. on Sunday, March 27, 2011,I watched my second grandchild come into this world — a gorgeous, raven-haired little girl.
There is nothing quite like this moment in life, and I’ve been privileged now to be there for the birth of both of Holly’s children. Wow.
But as I sat down to reflect on the experience, what I found myself thinking about is my daughter Holly’s strength. There is no doubt in my mind that she is far braver and stronger than I am. Does every mother feel the same when we watch our daughters give birth?
Holly was determined to have a drug-free birth and she succeeded, both times. Neither labour was easy nor short. In fact, the first time around, which was a home birth, the midwives were about to take her to the hospital when things weren’t moving along quickly enough, but just at the last moment, labour progressed.
Holly is fortunate to have a partner, her husband Dean, who supported her at every moment through both labours and deliveries, with encouragement, calmness, and loving assistance, but it is, after all, the mother-to-be who does the work. Dean and I stood there in awe of Holly’s tenacity and strength, as the contractions became fierce and the pushing took every ounce of strength.
As she neared the moment of delivery, when the labour was at its toughest, Holly said a few times, “I’m tired,” and “Why do you keep telling me how close we are? You keep saying that!” but that was about the extent of her complaints. She didn’t ask for anything for the pain, even at its worst, and she kept her focus. She nodded in thanks as I wiped the sweat from her face after each push, or when Dean adjusted her straw for another sip of water. Watching her body go through this most basic and elemental of functions, with Holly’s determination never wavering and her endurance carrying her forward, I felt such admiration and pride for her strength.
Today, Holly told me the nurses at Women’s Hospital were excited about another natural birth at the hospital, which is apparently not all that common these days. And the result, a perfect little granddaughter to join the family. We are ecstatic to welcome Eleanor Alice.
As a mother watching a daughter go through one of the most daunting tasks of her life with such courage, I witnessed the depth and internal fortitude of the woman my daughter has become. Now, in the cycle of life, I am the one learning from her. Thank you, Holly.
Holly and Dean moments after the arrival of Eleanor Alice
“Eleanor Alice, born March 27″ © Star Weiss. All Rights Reserved.
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