My third grandchild will be born sometime next month.
On Feb. 16 a group of my daughter-in-law’s friends gathered to celebrate her emerging motherhood. You see this is Annie’s first child. My other two grandchildren belong to my daughter.
The gathering of female friends was a ceremony of blessing and joy. Annie, whose middle name is Miracles in Botsawna’s native tongue, married my son three years ago. He wasn’t invited to the blessing shower but we did let him into the circle of love before the end of the day.
My son and his wife are living in a Buddhist community in New Hampshire. They live a peaceful simple life and want to nurture their family in this woodsy setting by a pond.
Annie has spent the past eight months getting ready for the next phase of her life. She is ready to mother her child. I know that this phase lasts a lifetime. My two children have been adults for many years and I still wish I could keep them safe.
Knowing when to let go is such an important part of motherhood.
Tonight Annie holds her child safe, away from the rest of the world.
Soon it will be time for the child to emerge into the world. On that day and every day afterwards, the child will move toward independence. Watching the circle of life brings out strong emotion. Watching Annie accept the love and support of her circle of women friends leaves me tearful, remembering another time – other friends – and such amazing support.
No child can be healthy and happy without the support of community.
The blessing of new life, the circle of continuation – miracles, certainly. I feel extraordinarily blessed to be within driving distance of this new branch of my family.