Welcoming a sweet miracle
By: Tammy Francois, Lake County News Chronicle
I have a new grandbabe. My daughter, son-in-law and granddaughter, Hattie, age four, welcomed Iris Garland to the family on Tuesday, May 14.
I wasn’t able to be there for the birth, but could barely maintain focus until the end of the workday Friday so I could make the drive to Northfield to meet her. She is the image of health and sweetness, with an impressive mop of dark brown hair, like her mother had as an infant.
Iris made her debut at 9 lbs., 14 oz., 21½ inches long and had a 16-inch chest. Suffice to say, we grow ‘em big in our family. My older son was 12 lbs., 10 oz. when he was born.
As the mother of five children, ranging in age from 17 to 30, I am approaching the time when all of my nestlings will have flown. With little Iris in mind, I look back to when my children were tiny bundles in my arms.
With my first, I had little idea what to expect and we learned about our roles together. By the time my fifth was born I knew to expect bumps, bruises and broken hearts. I also knew that the growing pains (on both sides of the equation) would be tempered with moments of delight, wonder and profound joy.
Last weekend I looked into Iris’s tiny face, with her round cheeks and eyes tightly closed in peaceful sleep, and wished with all my heart that I could give her all that children deserve — a world that nurtures the unique gifts she was born to give, reason to hope and believe that goodness will triumph over evil, and opportunities to witness what Martin Luther King assured: The arc of the moral universe is long, but it bends toward justice.
I hope, too, that she will lend her hands to shaping that arc.
Iris was born the day that Gov. Mark Dayton signed marriage equality into law in Minnesota. It crossed my mind that since she arrived three days after her due date, she may have been holding out until that historic date. Who knows? What I know for sure is that, on the day she was born, that arc of justice bent just a little farther in the direction of equality for her and all Minnesotans.