At church on Sunday, I kept Clara in the sanctuary with us instead of putting her in the nursery (there are day-care germs in that room and it scares me a little). It was kneeling communion and I planned to just skip out, but my dad said, "Go ahead to the rails and just take her." So I did. And as I kneeled there for the first time since she was born and took the bread and drank the cup, with Clara on my shoulder, I choked up.
As I drove down I-40 today and passed by Brenner Children's Hospital I thought of all the sick babies inside and all the wonderful nurses and doctors who are working tirelessly to save lives. I thought about the 78 days that we spent there and how incredibly blessed we were, and are, to have walked out of those doors with a baby in our arms. I choked up.
When Clara falls asleep in my arms after nursing and her little cheeks are pressed against my skin and I can feel her (still very fast) breathing as she rests, I choke up.
I watch her dad hold her and close his eyes and breathe in her smell with his face against her head and I choke up.
I see her taking in her world around her, figuring things out, soaking up books, discovering her hands and feet, smiling with love when she sees people she recognizes, and I choke up.
For the most part, Clara is in to holding her head UP these days. But sometimes, when she's tired, she'll rest it in that crook of my neck and shoulder and I can feel drool dripping down my back. Guess what? I choke up.
This is a beautiful thing. I hope I never lose sight of each of the moments that are so sacred, so precious, so miraculous.
I know I'll be choking up again next Sunday. We will have Clara dedicated at Knollwood Baptist Church during the 11:00 service. For any of you who may be interested in joining us, consider this an open invitation. This was one of the moments in the hospital that we dreamed about. I knew that we had given Clara over to God time and time again and that it wouldn't even really be necessary to say again that we're committing her to the Lord. But how sweet it will be to stand before so many people who prayed fervently for this baby and who loved and cared for us during the most difficult trial of our lives. It's the same sanctuary where I was baptized, married, and ordained as a deacon. It will be another joyous rite of passage to commit Clara's [already blessed] life to God's plan. I can see it now; I'll be choking up.
|Grandma Doris. Thanks for watching Clara for me! Hope I do as good a job of raising her as you did of raising me!|
Clara's dedication will be at:
Knollwood Baptist Church
330 Knollwood Street
Worship begins at 10:55
Sunday, August 21, 2011