After the Bright child was birthed, she was placed on my tummy and we examined her with glee and relief. Thomas cut the cord--they routinely wait until it has stopped pulsing--and she stayed with me for a long long time before they weighed her or anything! In fact, they never gave her a bath the whole time we were there! Amazing! Though they did wash her hair... It was thankfully an extremely clean birth. I didn't even have any water breaking. To this day, we still do not know what on earth happened to my bag of waters! Anyway, out came the placenta a few minutes later. And that is still in the freezer, thanks to our doula who ran out right away to get us an ice box from the store since we had forgotten one. I would love to encapsulate it again, but to dehydrate it I suppose I will have to wait til we move and I can get my toaster oven back.... Not to mention the roommate factor--nobody wants to deal with watching a placenta butchered in their kitchen.
So there she was! One minute in, next minute out. The miracle of birth is truly earth shattering. How anyone can chalk it up to evolution is beyond me. It all works so perfectly! And it always gives me such delight to see the baby we've been waiting for--who's been with us all these months, and yet we didn't know her. We'd felt her little heels, the roundness of her body, the hard head--through the rubber water balloon--but it was a mystery--what are you? Who are you? It was Pippa the whole time. Hah!
But rewind, because she wasn't yet named Pippa when she was born. We had spent so much time brainstorming a boy's name--because girl names are easy, right?--that we now found ourselves with a girl and--oops--not having settled on a girl name! My idea was to name her Olive if she came out with dark hair--I am asking you, what are the odds of having a black-haired husband and four blond-haired children? I love the Biblical symbolism for olives and olive trees. And yet, when she arrived, I was suddenly not so sure. Thomas seemed also not to have the strength of a resounding "YES" in his voice when I talked about that name, though he did say he liked it. Then I suggested Pippa. This name I had heard of long ago, and it recently came back to my attention and I just thought it was the cutest, happiest little name! At this idea Thomas brightened. And so did the postpartum nurse! She said, "Oh my goodness, seriously? When you started discussing what you should name her, I just had the thought, 'they should name her Pippa.'" I think that settled it for me right there; it was prophecy! But it would still take us until the next day to decide...
The nurse's name was Evangeline, too, (another one of my favorite names) and she was a Christian! She saw my Bible on the stand and then overheard something else we were saying, and she asked us finally if we were Christian, then confessed herself, "I love Jesus!" She was the dearest thing. She also was a Calvary Chapel girl, too, but she attended one closer to downtown. Thomas went off with Amanda to get me a Peets mocha =) This is becoming a post-birth tradition now. Sadly, I have perfected my coffee making at home to such a degree that I can hardly appreciate even a Peets mocha anymore! Dread. Thomas went home soon after this and I was eventually moved to a shared room with another postpartum mom, whom I hardly saw at all before curtains were drawn. I think she had had a C-section. I had been told I would eventually be moved up to the birth center-- but alas, it never did happen. So while I was a bit longing for the nice double beds up there, I had no reason to complain.
I nursed my baby, had my lunch, etc. and before I knew it, Thomas was arriving again for a visit with the children! They all busted in, disheveled, half in pajamas, hair unkempt, (OH the things that fathers may neglect to do! ...But the important things do get done: spending time with them, training them up, loving them, playing with them, and praying with them!) and fell upon their new little sister like a horde of hungry javelinas! They were all instantly IN LOVE. Even Silas! Oh my--the way he kissed and licked her and cooed "Baba, ...baba" over and over again. My poor husband was tired and not feeling well, so I told him he could lie down in the bed and I would move to a chair. He was dozing within minutes. There I was with my delicate situation and three children bouncing around the (shared!) room and climbing on any available furniture... fortunately a nurse noticed my plight. Her name was Liberty. And she gave me some liberty, alright! She ever so delicately pointed out that my children were energetic and encouragingly said, "Let's move you to another room! One just opened up down the hall." She bustled us down there, had other nurses grab all our stuff, and settled us in. She was SO sweet about Thomas and said with a wink, "We'll just let him keep sleeping until we need the room, ok?" Then she turned on the tv for my children and went away, coming back with about 18 packets of graham crackers and mini cartons of milk, which my children fell upon ravenously. Dinner is served! What a nurse!
All the nurses were wonderful. There was one the following day whose name was Karen, who was the chattiest thing you ever met, but in a good way! She asked me a LOT of questions, about my life and mothering and Christianity, even, just because she cared to know. My friend Melody has that skill as well, (the questions/caring combo) and it is rare. Haha, when we still hadn't settled on a name, Karen heard the baby scream and said, "you should call her Piper! Hahaha!" Little did she know we were considering Pippa, which is practically the same! I had a lot of time to research the name while I was at the hospital, and loved what the Holy Spirit was showing me. He reminded me that Philip the evangelist had particularly been impressed upon my heart in my study of the book of Acts a few weeks prior, what with his table-serving skills, evangelism skills, and then being teleported on top of all that. =) (Pippa derives from Philippa, which comes, of course, from Philip.) And the book of Philippians is also special and dear to my heart for family. I'd memorized chapter 2 last year. This would be her book. Then there came the issue of the middle name, and God gave us "Bright" at the last minute, which we both liked. Thomas had been inspired by Foxes Book of Martyrs and had suggested all kinds of middle names from there, derived from Roman, Gaelic, etc. But we decided on a Roman one for her 2nd middle name, Octavia. Eight is Thomas' favorite number, not to mention the spiritual significances of the number 8. Fruitfulness and superabundance being two of them, but especially this--renewal. The season that was ushered in at her birth was promising renewal. We saw it with the eyes of faith. The world would say another child just adds to the downward spiral. God has a different vision and a different agenda. Will we accept what He says? Pippa Bright Octavia. A name for a little princess destined for big things.