Ding! The elevator chimed as we reached the floor of our destination. The doors slid open, and I pushed the stroller into the daylight of the corridor. As quietly as we could, my son and I made our way through the winding hallways, following the arrows that pointed us to our final destination: labor and delivery.
As we got closer—another right, another left—I examined the room numbers one by one until finally, I found the one we were looking for.
“Here we are, buddy!” I whispered excitedly, reaching out to quietly knock on the door that I was so eager to step through.
“Come in!” I heard from the other side. Slowly, slowly, I pulled the handle and the door swung toward me. Just on the other side, set against a perfect view of the Blue Ridge Mountains, was the proud daddy, the tired but glowing mama, and the star of the show… the tiniest bundle wrapped in the classic hospital blanket, nestled safely in his daddy’s arms.
I unstrapped my son from the stroller and scooped him into my arms, and we walked toward the new arrival. “Look at the tiny baby!” I said, bringing him closer, “This is your new baby cousin!”
I still remember the group message Aimée sent to my mom, our sister Christine, and me the day before she went into labor: “I had a dream early Monday morning that the midwife told us the baby was going to come on Wednesday. Nope, nope. Probably because everyone at Easter was telling me there was ‘no way’ I was going to make it to May. And I’ve been washing baby clothes and setting the changing table and stuff this week.” I’ve always believed in mother’s intuition, but when we got the text from her on Wednesday morning that she’d been having contractions since the middle of the night that weren’t slowing down and they were headed to the hospital, the first thing I thought of was that message!
Nothing about birth ever goes 100% the way you’ve planned, but when a baby decides to arrive four weeks early, there’s definitely an added level of concern. But even with the curve balls they were thrown, Aimée and Stephen rolled with the punches and focused on the most important thing of all: baby’s safe arrival. We were all so relieved when we heard that baby had arrived and seemed, at first check, to be perfectly healthy. It made the joy of that first visit even sweeter, especially seeing the whole family together after the proud big brother (who you might remember from his recent birthday session) arrived! I absolutely loved watching him doting over his little brother. You could just tell that that they’re going to be the best of friends.
Aimée and Stephen: I have loved watching your family grow over these last four years, and one of the things I have always admired about your marriage is that no matter what life gives you, you face every situation with such strength. Your deep faith is so evident, and in addition to complementing each other so well, you are raising two amazing boys who I absolutely love and adore (as does their cousin!). I’m so happy that our children get to grow up together, and I can’t wait to watch their friendships grow over the years!