Believing in love
For the 26 years that I’ve been writing this column, one of my favorite small town items has been to write about new babies. It’s always happy news and it is the one bit of my column that I expect to be saved, tucked into someone’s baby book.
Even more than that, each birth feels to me renewed hope for the world. Yes, of course, hope beginning with our village, expanding out to our county, our country, the entire earth (and, if I may channel Thornton Wilder here), the solar system, the universe, the mind of God.
For what is the mind of God, but the manifestation of love? At least that’s so in my universe. And even further, what is a baby but the manifestation of love? Who would bring a child into this world unless they believed in the power of love over hate, of peace over war? Each new life is a completion of the circle that begins with the mind of God and rolls around, once more, to love, with the blessed birth of a child.
Of all the births I’ve announced in this column, one particular birth came to mind repeatedly recently. Back at least a decade ago, my friend, fellow Bouverie docent, and neighbor, Eleanor Decker, stopped me in the market and gushed, enthused and carried on with great emotion about her first grandchild. When she looked in my eyes and said, with great conviction, “You will love being a grandmother, someday,” it felt like a holy benediction. And so it was, and she was, indeed speaking the gospel truth.
Welcome baby Shiloh
Today, in this column I welcome Shiloh Robert Crawford, first grandchild of Bill and Sylvia Crawford, aka Sweetie and yours truly. This most wondrous new human was born on Jan. 31, 2014 at 11:02 a.m., in the propitious Chinese Year of the Horse. Amy Beth Crawford did the hard work, and Schuyler Ayers Crawford provided the encouragement; they are proud parents, indeed, backed up by proud grandparents, including Barbara Goldhammer of Seattle.
The little fellow arrived on planet Earth a tidy 7 pounds, 7.9 ounces, 20-1/2 inches long. As for his landing site, it was Portland, Ore., but last weekend little Shiloh came to Glen Ellen to visit his grandparents and friends.
As with every grandmother I’ve interviewed over the past quarter of a century: Yes, I claim, “My grandson is cute as can be,” with his Mama’s bright blue eyes, and his Papa’s receding hairline. We would welcome those eyes remaining that enticing color, though we do expect the hairline to improve.
As for those bright blue eyes, they also honor his late, beloved grandfather, Phillip Goldhammer. Ditto for the charming smile that’s just beginning to appear.
Immediately after Shiloh’s birth was announced and we grandparents were invited to visit, I scheduled a flight … one that just happened to coincide with a board meeting I was running. My fellow board members might well be aghast that I can barely remember what we discussed. The meeting ended barely two hours before flight time.
Then, a miracle only second to Shiloh’s birth: We made the flight on time. Landing in a blizzard of a Northwest storm, we blew into Portland for a short visit, but long enough to hold that little boy in our arms, never wanting to let go.