Posted by: gaylejervis | March 22, 2011


I grew up hearing stories from my Mom and relatives about how I was a breach birth and how Mom’s labor was excruciating.  My Grandma Speers came to live with us since my Mom’s polio had resurfaced and she couldn’t walk for six months and then she had to relearn how to walk.  Therefore, we were rather apprehensive when  years later, my sister went into labor.  And sure enough, she was in terrible pain for 27 hours with various complications until a caesarean section was performed.  When I became pregnant, I decided I could defy the genetic predisposition toward labor and Greg and I took La Maze Pregnancy Classes and I studiously practiced the breathing exercises.  My labor was better than my Mom’s and my sister’s, but I still had two births with my babies resting on my spine so that I thought they were going to emerge from my back. Eventually, these babies turned,  but  I wanted better for my daughter.

One week before my daughter went into labor, I thought I saw an encouraging sign when my daughter-in-law’s sister had a simple delivery.  However, when my daughter went into the hospital, she was immediately hooked up to monitors due to her own high blood pressure and due to the baby’s fast heart  beat.  She was given blood tests for further information.  Her baby was facing up rather than down which caused the doctor to explain that was why her labor was long and hard.

She was determined not to take drugs until finally she called out and said she needed something.  At first she said she needed morphine, but I encouraged her to have the epidural.  Since my daughter has a high pain threshold and is very determined, I knew that the pain was just about unbearable when she conceded.

As we waited for the anesthesiologist, I looked out the window and spoke angrily to God.  My 14 years of illness has never precipitated such an eruption of frustration and anger.  And yet,  I continued to inform Greg of specific prayer needs and he called people to pray for Kristen.  And then this beautiful angel arrived who is named after my Mom who is in heaven:  Viola Ann.

My anger was replaced by awe  as I gazed into this beautiful miracle.  And in the aftermath of delivery I finally became   aware of God’s touches in that room:

  1. God enabled me to be in the labor room all those hours!
  2. God lowered Kristen’s blood pressure
  3. God lowered Viola’s heart beat prior to her delivery
  4. Just moments before Kristen began pushing down,  Viola turned face down.
  5. Her doctor and nurses had told her that the pushing was going to last at least 1 ½ hours and instead it was considerably shorter.

Yes, all of these might have occurred without prayer.  Or not.  Up until that day, I had not been able to stay in a vertical position for that many hours in a LONG time.  And even though the next day was more difficult, I was able to spend the afternoon with them in the hospital waiting for Kristen and Viola to be released.  Even though I still had lots of symptoms the week I stayed at her place, I was still given enough strength to help her with meals and laundry.  Adrenalin?  Maybe.  Or not.

How many times throughout this illness has God answered various requests but because He hasn’t healed me, I don’t see them as answers?  At my daughter’s home, I was watching Viola being changed when this little angel squeezed her fingers around my finger. How often has God held me gently but unless I  pay close attention, I miss his slight squeeze to remind me of His Presence?



  1. Pain and joy – so often a strange mix in life. And yes – “…His slight squeeze to remind me of His Presence”. Great reminder – thanks :)

    • Thanks for reading my blog and thanks for your continual support and encouragement.

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