Our daughter is currently less than two weeks away from delivering her first child. It’s certainly been a long nine months for her. Not just because of the anticipation of having her first child, but also because her pregnancy has not been easy.
We see so many pictures in magazines and on TV featuring pregnant women who continue to work full time up to their due date, exercise daily, and do everything they used to do before getting pregnant, with seemingly no problems. For our daughter, this has not been the case. She has been sick the entire time; she’s been dehydrated and even hospitalized twice; there are very few foods she can eat without being nauseous; and by the seventh month, she was already having problems walking because of the excessive pain in her back and her hips.
And she’s only 27.
Pregnancy is not as easy for every woman as we’re led to believe. But she has gone though it, and will again, because she knows how much of an honor it is to bring a new life into the world. Pregnancy is indeed a miracle.
She’s heard all of my stories about my struggles with infertility and then with secondary infertility. She knows that as soon as a baby is conceived it is a human life. She also knows that not everyone is as lucky as she was to be able to easily conceive, even though the actual pregnancy itself has been so difficult. But knowing that doesn’t keep her from being miserable.
As her mother, I can’t help but worry about her. I’ve worried when she’s been sick all day. I’ve worried when she’s been dehydrated and going to the hospital. I’ve worried, yes, that something could happen to the baby. Even though I know in my heart, and in my head, that this little one is going to be just fine.
Mothers always worry about their children, no matter what age they are. It’s just what we do. And so will our daughter.
But two days ago, I discovered feelings that I didn’t even know I had. The actual realization that my daughter, the one I carried inside my own body, is carrying her own daughter inside of her. Yes, I knew that. But suddenly seeing her in a bathing suit for the first time this year, her swollen belly holding my granddaughter, I was suddenly struck with a new sense of both wonder and awe. I KNEW she was carrying a new life inside of her. My granddaughter was right in front of me…before my very eyes. Just hidden by her mother’s body.
The wonder of pregnancy is incredible when you stop to think about it. It is truly a miracle. From the moment of conception a mother is carrying another life; a life she alone is totally responsible for.
My daughter has been carrying a life that has been growing slowly inside of her for almost 240 days. We have actually seen her baby inside of her several times through the wonder of ultrasound technology. She has nourished that life on a daily basis; as she eats and drinks, so does her baby. She feels her baby move and kick, poking into her all the time now, because there’s not much room inside of my daughter for her daughter to grow any more.
My daughter’s daughter has grown and developed from just a few tiny cells into a multi-celled complex being that is her child. That is my grandchild. And yes, she was a human life from the time she was conceived.
May we never lose the idea of the wonder and the miracle that is involved in carrying a child. Because it is truly a gift from the Lord.
Just like our daughter. And our granddaughter. Both are our gifts from the Lord.