“Hercules! They should totally name him Hercules.” It had been a couple of hours and we were slumped in our seats trying to make the clock move faster. Right outside the bland hospital walls, snow swirled around, coating the cars in the lot. The weathermen named the storm “Hercules,” which at this point in time, was starting to seem like a brilliant name for the new baby. We couldn’t see the storm from where we sat, a waiting room with no windows to the outside world. Out-of-date magazines littered the end tables and none of us cared enough to change the TV channel. The energy in the room consisted of a nervous excitement and lots and lots of anticipation. It had started earlier that morning when we first found out Alli was in labor. Eventually, my mother couldn’t take sitting at home and waiting. Driving to the hospital to wait felt much more productive. The slushy (and hilly, unfortunately) roads to the hospital confounded even my 4WD car. I *may* have slid right into a curb while taking a turn. I waited for my parents and sister so we could all go in together. We were directed to our windowless waiting room to sit. And sit. And sit. Alli’s parents joined us. And we all sat and waited together. My sister and I made a quick run to the cafe for snacks and drinks, anything to break up the waiting. Not because we were there forever, but because we were so excited, we could hardly sit still. Might as well make ourselves useful! And then the text arrived! It was happening! We all rushed down to labor and delivery in the hopes of seeing the brand new baby. The nurse on the other end of the intercom shut us down pretty curtly, sending us back to the waiting room. Do you have any idea how hard it was for those grandmothers to make their way back to that grungy room, knowing their new grandson was somewhere they couldn’t see him?! And so we waited some more. And with no word from my brother, people (namely grandmothers) started to get a little nervous. “Why haven’t we heard anything? You don’t think anything went wrong, do you?” And then, in the cell tower vortex that is the hospital, a text managed to make its way through to Alli’s mom’s phone. And there was a photo. Of a naked squirmy little newborn baby. Who had ten fingers and ten toes. And a name. At least a first name. We were still holding out hope for Hercules (which really would make a great middle name). And after just a little while longer, we were allowed to go see everyone. We practically skipped down the hallway – it was the yellow brick road, and we were the Wizard’s journeymen.
These photos are taken over two visits, in a 24 hr period. In the first set, the baby is only an hour or so old. In the later photos, he’s about 22 hours old. Looking through these photos fills me with love. The expressions on everyone’s faces? You are right there with them. To be able to document a day like this for my own family is not just a wonderful gift to my brother and sister-in-law, but it’s the best gift I could have been given (besides my kickass new nephew, of course). Andy & Alli, you rock! Thanks for putting up with all of us, that day and every other!
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