On January 31, around 7:00 pm, my daughter-in-law felt the beginning of labor pains. My wife, who is a licensed midwife here in British Columbia, quietly sprang into action, making preparations for the birth. For the past several months, the plan was for Shannon to give birth in our bedroom, for more space.
It was very exciting as Shannon’s birth pangs increased in intensity and many family members gathered to wait and offer support. My 2-year old granddaughter, Azélia, sat with my two daughters, along with several other women, mostly Parks.
Around midnight, I went to sleep in my downstairs office for a few hours, intermittently being woken to the sound of groaning from upstairs. At 2:30 am, I heard the sounds of pain turn to bursts of laughter. I thought, “This is a good sign!” So I went upstairs and heard the good news that Zebedee Park was now among us!
What a miracle to see little Zebedee: a perfectly formed baby boy, wide-eyed and calmly looking around the room. Holding him to my chest, I was overwhelmed with gratitude for God’s gift to our family. There were complications with Shannon’s first birth, so this fast and healthy delivery was especially sweet.
I have a grandson! It doesn’t matter how many times I’m around a newborn—I’m in awe every time. Having a granddaughter was amazing, now our joy is doubled. Looking around the room at my daughters and daughters-in-law, I thought about the grandbabies in our future…with eight of our own children, I wonder what the final tally will eventually be?!
God keeps giving us blessings we don’t deserve and haven’t earned: that’s his grace. At times like this, I think about what is most important in life: loving the people that are close to me. The busy-ness of life is briefly suspended as we gather to cherish the precious moment of a new birth.