God winks are what happens when the stars align and something impossible suddenly becomes possible.
That happened today and the result was well, spectacular.
From October until late spring, the NICU has a strict policy on visitors: parents and grandparents ONLY. Its purpose is to keep babies safe during flu season.
Tuesday night I got a call from a friend in Baton Rouge. Jennifer is an insanely talented photographer who has taken gorgeous pictures of Manning and my family. She was coming through Jacksonville on her way to a meditation retreat in Florida.
Jennifer asked if she could come see us and take pictures of Marjorie. My heart skipped a beat. What a special gift! But I knew the chances were slim to none on getting her through NICU security.
Well never say never! We got the green light and Jenn appeared this morning with her sanitized camera and a big hug.
It also just so happened that Marjorie’s feeding tube was due to be changed today. So for two glorious hours I got to stare at my beautiful girl without any tubes or tape on her precious face.
I cried throughout the session watching Jenn lovingly take picture after picture, working around Marjorie’s incubator and tiny “room”. As it became my turn to hold her and get a few shots of us, Jenn told me to nuzzle her. I quietly replied that I could not. It’s not safe for my face to get too close. Only in the last week have I started kissing her on the forehead and back of her head.
Jen smiled back and said well do what you would normally do. Tears started pouring down my face. I raised Marjorie’s cheek to mine and kissed her over and over. For a small moment I felt like a mom kissing her newborn baby, even if Marjorie is 8 weeks old. Today I finally got the pictures and experience I’ve been praying for.
I’ve sat at my computer countless times trying to create a birth announcement with photos taken from my iPhone. But the pictures did not do justice to my baby girl. Her face was always hidden behind tubes, tape and wires. Today my Marjorie got the pictures she deserved.
The stars truly aligned. Today God didn’t just wink, He gave me a massive hug and a reminder that no matter how scary and dark the road may be, there is always a light at the end of the tunnel.
Here are just a few sneak peaks…