i stood in the middle of that large worship room – the very one in which we’d recently held the service to celebrate ava’s life – and felt the familiar welling of hot tears as i learned what she was walking through with her unborn baby. the mutual friend who was sharing the story told me that the neurologists were saying many phrases that were familiar to our family, too, and i immediately felt peculiarly close to the young mom she was speaking of, a young mom that i’d never even met. our mutual friend asked gingerly and with much compassion, i know the wounds are fresh for you, but do you think you could talk with her?
the three of us emailed back and forth a bit and when the time eventually came when i could go a whole day without crying, i thought, i’m ready now. the lord had that sweet momma on my heart every single day for a week so i let out one good cry, prayed, and finally got myself together to call her. josie was every bit as precious on the phone as i imagined she would be. i guess we only made it two or three minutes into the call, though, when she told me the news: she was going to the hospital the following morning for their baby’s delivery.
before i could even think about how weird it might be to josie for me, a virtual stranger, to photograph her baby’s birth, i offered to come that following morning to shoot what was sure to be an incredibly emotional day. much to my delight, she was as excited about it as i was. what i didn’t know then, though, is that i would end up rushing my daughter to the hospital that night for complications from her newly diagnosed type 1 diabetes. while they worked to stabilize my little one in the early hours of that morning, i had to write the heartbreaking note to let josie know i could no longer come to document the arrival of her own darling blessing. despite a last minute change in plans – and to everyone’s incredible thankfulness and joy – baby jed made his appearance that afternoon far stronger and more stable than anyone had offered hope of.
after another plan to visit was bumped by unscheduled trip to the hospital for jed, i finally got my hands on this precious gift today, and yes, i’m most certainly smitten with this little love and his family. i sat back and admired the way josie and her husband, richard, gently cared for jed and praised god for the tremendous value of his life. there’s no doubt about it, my friends, it was beautiful and sacred in their home today.
“there is one thing that deserves my greatest care, that calls forth my ardent desires,
that is that i may answer the great end for which i am made –
to glorify thee who hast given me being.”
-a puritan prayer