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By Theresa Powell

Shortly after finding out that our son, Nathan, and daughter-in-law, Emily, were expecting their second child, we learned that Nathan, who is a captain in the United States Air Force, would be deployed to the Middle East in July 2018. Upon learning that the baby was due December 31 and that Nathan was not scheduled to return home until mid-January, he asked me if I could stay with Emily and Titus, our two-year-old grandson, at their home in New Mexico from mid-December through late December. Then Emily’s parents would arrive and stay until Nathan arrived home. It took me at least two seconds to say yes.

Upon my scheduled arrival to New Mexico, Mom and baby were doing well, and Grandma was looking forward to spending time playing with Titus and cooking and baking for the family. Shortly after my arrival, we made a test run to the hospital and did a walk-through so that Emily would know what she needed to do upon her arrival at the hospital, and I would know where to take her just in case I had to drive her there. However, she had hired a doula with the idea that the doula would pick her up at her home and take her to the hospital to coach her through labor and delivery while I remained home with Titus.

Jovie Noelle Powell, here receiving a smooch from big brother, Titus, arrived at 8:41 p.m. on Sunday, December 23, 2018, weighing 6 pounds, 13 ounces, and was 20 inches long.

Jovie Noelle Powell, here receiving a smooch from big brother, Titus, arrived at 8:41 p.m. on Sunday, December 23, 2018, weighing 6 pounds, 13 ounces, and was 20 inches long.

Emily, Titus, and I took a one-mile walk every day, stopping at the park to let Titus play on our way home. December 22 was going to be a full moon, so we made sure we got our daily walk in that day in hopes of an early arrival. The gravitational pull from the moon is very strong at this time, and Nathan was actually born ten days before his due date on the morning following a full moon. But December 22 came and went with no sign of baby.

The next day was Sunday, December 23, and we were off to church for Sunday morning service. After we returned home and grabbed lunch, Emily and Titus went down for an afternoon nap. There was a Christmas candlelight service Sunday evening, and with Mommy feeling well, we decided to go. During the service Emily began to have minor contractions, so we headed home immediately after church was over. We arrived at the house about 6:50 p.m. and settled Titus into bed by 7:40. We both retreated to our bedrooms for a little while. I was praying for Emily as her contractions were getting stronger and more regular, and Emily was in communication with Jenn, her doula. I decided to read my Bible in the family room while continuing to pray for Emily since she had labored for 36 hours with Titus.

At 8:25 p.m. Emily came out of her room, approached the family room, and went down on her hands and knees with a strong contraction. She asked me to get her suitcase from her bedroom as Jenn was coming to pick her up. I ran into her room, zipped up her suitcase, and brought it to the front door. At this time, Emily was on her knees bracing herself on the ottoman in the family room. She had called Jenn and put the phone on speaker mode. I told Jenn that Emily was feeling the urge to push. The doula said she was on her way and would arrive very soon.

The contractions were coming hard and Emily was ready to deliver her baby. She told Jenn to call 911, and Jenn calmly asked Emily if she would rather have an ambulance or a midwife come to her home.

Emily responded, “Whichever one can get here the fastest.”

Jenn told us she would call the midwife and then call us right back. Within the next minute, Jenn sent a text that she would be at the house in two seconds, so I ran out the front door to usher her in, but she was nowhere in sight. I ran back into the house and Emily said she had to push NOW.

Jenn was back on the phone with us, and as we encouraged Emily to relax, focus, and breathe, the next contraction produced the baby’s head. With Jenn’s coaching, I held the baby’s head until the next contraction, which delivered a baby girl. I handed her to Emily as we lightly shook her (as coached by Jenn) and patted her little bottom until we heard the awaited cry – music to our ears!

We were both somewhat in shock but also amazed at this little miracle and the way in which Jovie Noelle Powell had made her grand entrance into this world. Within a couple of minutes, Jenn walked through the door and together we got Mommy and baby resting comfortably. Later we learned that Jenn had been pulled over by a police officer on her way to Emily’s house, delaying her arrival by a few minutes. That was most likely the difference between Jenn’s delivering the baby and my delivering the baby. Shortly after 9:00 p.m., Liz, the midwife, arrived at the house and with Jenn’s help, administered care for Emily and Jovie.

I believe God has a real sense of humor as my daughter is a nurse practitioner, and there are three other nursing professionals in our family, BUT GOD chose the accountant-grandma who has never seen this side of a baby’s birth to welcome this special delivery. It was indeed a Christmas gift beyond my wildest imagination!

About the Author

MSG Powell w baby 0319Theresa Powell, CPA, serves as the chief financial officer for Dayton Christian School in Dayton, Ohio. Her husband, Dan, pastors Calvary Open Bible Church, also in Dayton. The Powells have two adult, married children and two adorable grandchildren.

About The Author

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