You were so loved by your nurses who used to say you were going to grow up to be a pastor and evangelist. There was nobody in the NICU who raised their hands higher than you did!
Your granddaddy though, he was different. He couldn't handle being away from you for even one day. It was so obvious how important you were to him, every time he came to see you he was dressed to the nines for a very special occasion. YOU were his daily special occasion. I remember seeing him in the waiting room once when the unit was closed. There was a new baby in the NICU, so we would all have to wait a while to see our little ones. His ride couldn't wait with him and we watched him make phone call after phone call until he could find another ride a little bit later. He HAD to see you.
He loved you. So. Much.
I just loved your relationship. There were very rarely words, he rarely held you. But you were never alone. He was always there, by your side, loving you with every bit of the love in his heart.
We would visit and catch up sometimes while we were all scrubbing in and he would update us on your progress with THE biggest smile on his face. You were absolutely the apple of his eye.
I remember your last day in the NICU, meeting your mom and congratulating her on your homecoming. Your granddaddy was by her side as she got to know you, but when your mama's boyfriend came in, he had to leave. He didn't put up a fight, he didn't get upset, he just waited outside the door. I imagine him praying for you, for your transition into a stranger's home, that you would be loved and cared for well.
Oh, sweet boy, how loved you are today!
When your nurse told me through tears that she ran into your granddaddy... Oh, I know that his prayers for you were answered! How loved, how cared for you are today in your Heavenly Father's arms!
You went home from the NICU healthy, and not many days later you went to your eternal home healthier.
You left an impact, baby boy. You and that precious granddaddy of yours painted a picture of a beautiful relationship...
...a picture of a child deeply loved by a Father, of a Father who would do anything to be by His child's side.
You reminded me of myself, broken, in need of a Father, a Savior. You showed me that even in my deepest moments of brokenness I can, I must, lift my hands high in praise and thanksgiving.
Your granddaddy, he was the only father you knew, he reminded me of my Heavenly Father, Who loves me deeply and stands by my side in silent confidence. I needed that in those so broken days crying by Mercy's bedside. Sweet boy, you reminded me of the hope I have in a Savior Who I need every day, a Savior Who is worthy of my praise.
**this post is part of a seven week series of 'letters' to people, events and things that were part of the life transforming work God did in our lives during Mercy's stay in the NICU - for more on our growth in the NICU, check out our CaringBridge page**