Tiny New Light

I’m sitting on a couch in my daughter Rachel’s home in Chicago, holding my first grandchild, a boy, seven days old.  I’ve heard grandparents talk, ad nauseum, about the thrill of this relationship, but, as with having your first baby, you have no clue what it will be like until it happens.

I still don’t know the baby’s name.  Rachel and her husband, Jay, decided not to reveal it to our S smiling w Ffamily and friends until the bris—the circumcision and blessing performed eight days after his birth.  Traditionally, parents give the baby his Hebrew name during the ceremony, but Rachel and Jay wanted to do the same with his English name.  So they wrote it on his birth certificate and told no one else.

Months before, when they’d learned they were having a boy, Rachel asked me to plan the bris. I live in Colorado, so I wondered, how would I find a mohel—the man trained and certified to perform the bris—in Chicago?  Online, of course. The mohels are even rated on Yelp, and I discovered there are now female mohels, often former pediatricians, who refer to themselves as a “mohelet.”

Jews have been conducting the circumcision ritual, symbolizing the covenant between God and Abraham, for thousands of years, long before it was adopted by people from other cultures for health reasons.  Recently, though, the health benefit has been debated, causing some to avoid the procedure.

After discussion, Rachel and Jay chose to follow the Jewish tradition, linking their baby to the long chain of males going back to ancient days.  She spoke with three mohels, then chose Rabbi Phil Karesh because of his flexibility and sensitivity.

On the eighth day, about 20 family members and friends gathered in the rooftop lounge of one of Rachel’s cousins, which has sweeping views of Lake Michigan. Rachel sat on a couch, and the baby was brought to the “Chair of Elijah” by my son, Andy, and his Chinese wife, Fay.  This is an honor that’s said to bring luck and fertility to a couple who hope to have children, which they do.

Bringing baby to Chair of Elijah.  Mohel on rt.

Bringing baby to Chair of Elijah. Mohel on rt.

The actual cutting took less than two minutes.  Rachel’s father, Glen, held a wine-soaked gauze pad in the baby’s mouth, but he howled when the Mohel opened his diaper.  Those two minutes seemed interminable. Finally, when the mohel fastened a diaper back on and put another wine-soaked pad in his mouth, he closed his eyes and sucked.

He was handed to me to hold for the blessings, during which the mohel announced, “His Hebrew name is Asher ben Jay.” Asher, son of Jay.  Hmm, I thought, that probably means his English name begins with A.  What could it be?  Anthony, Abraham…?

Rachel said, in a soft voice, “His name is Felix.”

What? Felix? Really? That name had never crossed my or anyone else’s mind, except theirs, obviously. Rachel explained, “We like the name because it’s lively and distinct, Jay had an uncle Felix who served in the Peace Corps, and especially because it means “happy” in Latin.  His Hebrew name, Asher, also means happy. 

It began to grow on me. Yes. Little Felix. Then she said, “His middle name is…..Marvin.” That was my father’s name, and it blew me away. Marvin had died when Rachel was five, and she has no memory of him. I had brought my father’s tallis, the prayer shawl he received on his bar mitzvah in 1921, to Chicago because it’s traditional to wear one for the bris.  Rachel said she would wear it, but not in my wildest dreams did I imagine she’d name the baby after my father. She explained that she’d heard wonderful things about him.

Jay, Felix and Rachel, wearing tallis

Jay, Felix, and Rachel, wearing tallis

She also may have a sense memory of Marvin because he adored her, holding her whenever he had a chance.  To me, it was a testament to her love for her lineage—through me and my sister back through my father and his father, Abraham—and it brought me to tears.

The following day, Jay’s mother and I took turns holding the baby while Jay’s father did loads of laundry for the couple.  Every two to three hours, Jay would change the diaper and Rachel would breast feed and then hand him to one of the grandmas.  We couldn’t get enough of Felix.  Holding him was tranquilizing, and nothing else seemed relevant.  Business, emails—all fell away. It was one of those moments when you get to just “be.”

S & F sleepingAnd you couldn’t help but marvel that, from a tiny zygote, tinier than a single poppy seed, grows an entire human baby, with fingernails and bending knees and an iris in each eye.

It was a joy to watch my daughter care for Felix so naturally, with a grace and confidence that had not come naturally to me. I remember pacing the floor at 4 a.m., jiggling my first-born in a Snugli as he wailed.  Frazzled and desperate, I would strap him into his car seat and drive the freeways until he fell asleep, only to open his eyes and cry the minute I turned off the ignition.

It’s different, of course, with grandchildren because you can hand them back to their parents, but I was unprepared for the communion I felt holding Felix as he slept on my chest.  I loved hearing the gentle cooing of his breathing in and out, and feeling the soft pulsing of his tiny stomach against mine.  As we grow older, feeling that connection between the baby’s wee new light and ours that’s slowly fading is… poignant.  We come and we go…from where and to what?  The same mysterious space?  I have no words.  Just gratitude, and a deep bow.  Amen.

 

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102 thoughts on “Tiny New Light

  1. Jacqui

    I had tears come as well, as I read this. A new baby is such a blessing!
    When my son was born, I had him circumcised because it was done routinely. But when you have the ability to make a conscious choice whether to do it, and then decide to carry it out, the ritual is truly meaningful. Mazel tov!

    Reply
  2. Denise

    As a friend of Rachel’s through her old college friend, my son Justin- I kveled along with you as I heard of the good news of the birth of your Grandson and loved learning of the explanation of his name. Mazel tov to you and the entire family. Looking forward to reading the new book.

    Reply
  3. Ken Pyburn

    I have missed your blogs, just the other day I wondered what had happened to the book and the bog. As a student of Positive Aging, and a member of Sage-ing International which Reb founded years ago as an Institute, I was happy to read this blog and the book announcement.

    Lovely story, especially since I will not be a grandfather it appears and I love hearing about the glory of how it affects those that are.

    Reply
  4. Mike Godby

    Hi Sarah

    I enjoy your writting and stories. I will never understand why that cutting a piece of a baby’s

    dick off is anything but absolute ignorance and should be considered child abuse. I can ‘t

    believe that any baby boomer would think this is a good idea. Mike

    Reply
    1. Sara Post author

      It is hard to understand, Mike. We question and think about it a great deal. The baby doesn’t suffer much, as I wrote. The second after it’s done, he’s happily sucking and ready to sleep. The reasons given through the ages are varied and complex, and finally, I think, it’s an emotional decision, rather than a rational one. I can totally understand and support coming down on either side, and respect both decisions. Thanks for your input!

      Reply
    2. Isabelle Smith

      I agree with you Mike. I find this cruel. I have 4 brothers who have all been circumcised for medical reasons and not religious reasons (I am from a catholic family)and it is not fun for them, even when done in a hospital under anesthesia. I also have a friend who had a jewish upbringing and decided not to have it done on her 2 suns. Anyway, (sorry Sara because I do appreciate you) I have no patience with any religion. I find it’s brain washing and it interferes with you own thinking and I am glad I wope up against my catholic education.

      Reply
  5. Joe Drew

    This is a beautiful — stunningly beautiful — account of the meaning of life. You end on the perfect note. What is life? What is consciousness? Socrates said that he did not fear death; it was a journey, and he’d been on many journeys before. The only difference here was the question of whither? From the moving account of the circumcision of the grandchild to the feelings of being a grandparent to the question of the schema or meaning underlying this swift flowing life, you’ll packed it all in one powerful package. It’s the arc and pattern of history and of life.

    Reply
    1. Sara Post author

      Thanks, Joe, for your kind words. You truly get it — everything I wanted to say. The wonder, the love and the mystery.
      Warmest, Sara

      Reply
  6. Judi turner

    This is fun. I finally get to tell you how much I’ve enjoyed your blog all these years. I could never get past the technology to respond before. Looking forward to more entries. We were in the same high school graduation class at LA HIGH.
    judi Bachrach

    Reply
  7. suzi rudd cohen

    MAZAL TOV! to the family and to you. Thank you for these gorgeous words. I shed tears of joy while reading this. I am making a donation in honor of Felix Marvin to the AEPHI Foundation..someday some AEPHI chick will marry him! Enjoy!!!
    Suzi

    Reply
    1. Sara Post author

      Awww, Suzi, that’s so sweet. My daughter will be so pleased, as will Felix. Thanks and blessings to you and yours.

      Reply
  8. Robin Katz

    Congratulations Sara to you and your wonderful family. It’s been a real joy reading about all the well deserved happy events that have come into their lives and yours.

    Please keep up updated on Mr. Felix’s progress. Many of us will be very happy to kvell along with you. Mazel Tov!

    Reply
  9. Janat Dundas

    I too remember holding my first grandchild and it was like our DNA sparked at each other. Memorable even after 23 years. Now I have 3 granddaughters and am in love with them and thrilled to have moved back to Boulder to pick them up from school every day. It’s a wonderful life and they are a huge part of it.

    Reply
  10. cindy

    Welcome back!! Have missed reading your wonderful, blogs! Congrats on your new grandbaby! I know what it feels like, I have 5! I was always worried, if I would have enough love for all of them, but we do!!! Once you hold that baby in your arms, you feel the love between you! Nothing compares!!!

    Reply
  11. Ricky Johnston Apollo

    Ah Sara, what beautiful news! So happy for you and your family. My first “grand” – little Molly Mae Valerie Johnston Cassell was born on my birthday this year in Australia! (Grandniece as no children forthcoming from Darian!)
    And wonderful about the book – looking forward – and glad to have your blog back!
    xx Ricky

    Reply
    1. Sara Post author

      Ricky, what wonderful and auspicious synchronicity that your niece’s baby was born on the same day as you. My grand nephew was born on my mother’s birthday, just after she passed. Cue the theme music from “Twilight Zone.”

      Reply
  12. Susan Morrell

    I read this at my desk at work and was blinking back the tears as the joy and love and grace of God flowed from your words to my heart. I never had children, so won’t experience grandchildren. But my brother, Tony, had “my kids” for me — my nieces Christina and Rachel and my nephew Michael. And I so understand the bond you describe as what I felt when I met and held them as newborns.

    I remember thinking, “You are so pure and straight from God. If only you could talk and tell me what it’s like in the spiritual realm!” Ironically, I experienced the same curiosity when my maternal grandmother was in her last few years and experiencing dimentia. (She died at 103 years of age.) She would talk about Gloria and Frank (my parents) and Todd (her husband) and other long-dead relatives as having been there with her that day. She was in communication with them because she was already making that transition from corporeal to spiritual being. “You are so pure. If only you could tell me what it’s like for them.”

    Thank you for sharing this experience, Sara. I look forward to reading more and to your new book.

    Susan Morrell

    Reply
  13. Lynn McCoy bennett ( nee Katzmann)

    Mazel Tov, Oma, on the brilliant new light you hold in your arms. Beautiful Boy, and Beautiful Grand Ma.

    Reply
  14. Palle Rilinger

    As “The Other Grandmother”, I found Sara’s blog of special interest! :) Felix is a wonderful baby with wonderful parents.

    Reply
    1. Sara Post author

      I’ll never forget the look on your face, Palle, when you were holding Felix and said, “I’m allowed to kiss the top of his head.” The day before, your son had asked me not to kiss him yet because at 7 days old, he was vulnerable. So I was thrilled to hear it was allowed somewhere. And more thrilled to see your face, transfixed with light and sweetness.

      Reply
      1. Palle Rilinger

        Thank you, Sara. Your keen observation and writing have contributed so much to our shared family history. It is always so good to spend time together, and it will be so much fun to watch Felix grow and develop and to share our grandmotherly observations. With love, Palle

        Reply
  15. Richard Rossner

    Bravo, Sara! Well done – as an author of a wonderful article…and a mother and grandmother. I remembered the joy and pain of our son’s bris. (And yes, even the adults feel some of the pain of this ritual.) It truly is a tie that binds generation to generation. Mazel tov on many levels!

    Reply
    1. Sara Post author

      HI Richard. Yes, it was tough to hear the baby’s cries, but they were soon over, and the blessings given by everyone present more than balanced it with joy.
      Warmest, Sara

      Reply
  16. Gail Toyooka

    Congratulations Grandma Sara!
    I became a Grandma for the 5th time on October 17th.
    My daughter, Barri, gave birth to her 4th, a girl named
    Jayci(Daddy is Jay) Kimie (my husband’s mother’s name)
    Saribay.

    I look forward to reading your newest book.

    Much Aloha, Gail.

    Reply
  17. mimi mindel

    Mazel Tov dear Sara on becoming a granny!!! Thrilled for you. I am the happy granny of six grandsons, the newest Renzo James is 5 months old. All of them are lights in my life.
    I was shocked when they told me his name was Renzo as it certainly wasn’t on my list of names!
    Have fun,
    Love, mimi

    Reply
  18. Torkin Wakefield

    Hi Sarah,
    Thank you for this lovely and compelling story of your grandson and your Jewish tradition holding your family so strongly.
    Welcome to grandmotherhood.
    Torkin

    Reply
    1. Sara Post author

      Thanks, Torkin. I just wish the new family and I lived closer! Any ideas about how to deal with that? Warmest, Sara

      Reply
  19. Roz Ellman Ross

    Thank you for the beautiful note. It brought me back to the birth of my own grandchildren. My oldest son Craig has two daughters, Mia will be 17 this month and her sister Devon is 14. They live in Toronto so i do not see them often. My youngest son, Gavin, has a boy who will be 5 in December. They live in Burbank and he is the love of my life. life has been good for me. I will bne leaving in 2 weeks for a vacation in Nepal and I am still working. 38 years at the same job. I am glad to know things seem to be good for you also. Keep in touch.
    Love, Roz

    Reply
    1. Sara Post author

      Wonderful, as always, to hear from you, Roz. I’m thinking about the distance issue now, as I want to know him through all the stages and support his parents. Lots of trips to Chicago, I guess. Warmest, Sara

      Reply
  20. sister terry

    I loved this sharing on a tiny new light. Felix, Marvin. awwwww.
    It brought me to the very precious moments of being with baby and our extended family
    I love this saying…when a child is born so is a Grandmother! Grandfather too. Congratulations to all the family and extended family.

    Reply
  21. Dale Elena

    Congratulations!

    I have 2 grandchildren and with the birth of each one I felt the maternal connection flow right through me. It was as if my daughter, myself and the baby were inseparably connected. And as you mentioned, holding the baby to my chest….indescribable! The baby I gave birth to had given birth!

    And I learned something astonishing. When a baby girl is born, she already has all the eggs in her ovaries. They are not fully developed, but they are there. Which, I realized, meant part of that little grandbaby had been in ME when I was growing my daughter in my womb. Realizing that, I felt an incredible visceral connection to those babies.

    I can not wait to read your book, “The December Project.” It reminds me of a song my father used to sing to me called “December Song” .
    And what an incredible honor to work with REB Zalman! I have heard him speak a number of times and have read his book “From Aging to Saging”

    Reply
  22. Sara Nichols

    You just have to be one to get it. “Nana” fills me with more joy than anything else in my life. It’s about time you joined the tribe!!!

    Reply
  23. Ivy Li

    Thanks so much for sharing the beautiful experience with us! It was very moving and you write elegantly. I love to read your passages, please keep posting these!

    Reply
  24. Silvia

    Oh Sarah, what a wonderful message. Thank you for sharing it with me. I’m Christian, but I’ve always been fascinated the the Jewish rituals and religion. Your grandson’s bris was full of meaning and tradition. God bless you and your family, and may your grandson have a peaceful, centered, happy life. Mazel Tov!

    Reply
  25. A Political Friend Post author

    Nice to have you back online-you write so beautifully! The story of Felix and your reaction and interaction brings memories to us older grandparents. As one who has been involved with promoting mother’s milk for all newborns, and passing legislation to encourage work site accommodations , I am cheering your daughter’s decision to breast feed!

    Reply
  26. Rabbi Mel Glazer

    Mazal Tov to you from Colorado Springs!
    Your description of a bris is a masterpiece, and I will quote you often with my upcoming parents-to-be, many of whom also question the necessity of a bris. Thanks for your emotional passion and your response to the ill-mannered boor who questioned your sanity.

    I have missed your blogs, and look forward to your book. Reb Zalman taught and ordained my son Ilan, who married Leslie, an RRC grad, they are job-sharing the rabbi position on the Conservatice shul in Memphis.

    Welcome back, bubbe…we have missed you!
    Mel Glazer

    Reply
  27. Michael

    Thank you, Sara, for your kind and feeling heart. For your life, your words, your love, which so transform everyone in your family, and everyone you touch.

    Reply
  28. Roger

    Hi Sara,
    So very happy for you, Rachel and Jay. And of course, Felix.
    many nice thoughts from your blog; but I have been doing family Constellation work lately, and so nice to see your daughter come back to her maternal grandfather. We carry much energy from our ancestors, and when we’re all in alignment it makes our lives and their peace of mind so much better. We can discuss this some more next time you’re in paradise.
    With fond aloha, Roger

    Reply
  29. Mike Godby

    Hi Sarah. Thanks for your reply. Circumcision is irrational and I don’t get the emotion that comes with maiming a baby and turning it into a sacrament because all of the men that came before had the same involuntary act done to them. The fact that the baby is content with ingesting wine afterwards and sleeping does n’t mean there is little pain. Studies that have been done demonstrate that circumcised men don ‘t have the same sexual sensitivity. Who knows the emotional effects. Maybe that’s why so manymen are pissed off. Hmmm!

    Reply
  30. Tracy Evans

    I’m so glad that you have a new book coming out and are back at the blog.
    More importantly, congratulations that you produced a functioning child that feels in her heart her heritage. Respect for others’ heritage is part of one’s contribution to the civility of a society, in my opinion (whether I agree with an action or not).
    It’s always a crap shoot with children and you obviously did good:)

    Reply
  31. mary burdt

    Nice to hear about your beloved grandson. What a joy it is to welcome a new family member into the flock. There is nothing quite like being a grandparet. It is impossible to define but it is the greatwst feeling in the world.
    I look forward to reading your upcoming book.

    Reply
  32. Karen Hart

    You lovely, insightful prose often resonates with me and touches me, Sara. Congratulations on being a grandmother! I feel blessed to have lived long enough to have this stupendous joy. Cheers, Karen in Fort Collins.

    Reply
  33. Louise Jarvis

    I’m a little jealous of you, as my children haven’t yet made me a grandmother, except my oldest son who has made me a step grandmother to a sweet girl who was aged 7 at the time. Interestingly her name is also Louise. We have had some similar experiences as I grew up in southern California and I am a skier but you have the one ups-manship now. Glad you have a new book coming out and are blogging again.

    Reply
  34. Quint

    Well… you’re done… 3 times for me…. they have me TOTALLY under control… it’s all the parenting fun without the late nite feedings (burping is just another excuse to hold them)… changing diapers…

    Being a grandparent makes it all what it’s about… that creates that immortality that says who you are continues…

    Now the fight comes with the “it’s my baby not yours” or the “I raised you to be a better parent than that”… or…

    Reply
  35. James Angleton

    You discussed your developing spiritual side in Loose Change. I remember that a number of men–no names–refused to take you seriously. Yet it is a huge blunder to ever make fun of a woman’s introspective journeys. In fact you and Joan Didion are both introspective women. In any event you do not let the views of others stop your development. Your joy in your grandchild and in your family and its history is wonderful to read. I hope you will write about the intuitive and spiritual side of women and why some try to crush it.

    Reply
  36. Trisha

    Sara,
    That is the most beautiful post you’ve ever written. A smile came to my face as I could feel the love before I even began to read. I could feel his little heart beating on your chest through your words. You were able to convey the feeling of love. Thank you.Trisha

    Reply
  37. Cookie Knight

    Congratulations, grandchildren are an amazing mitzvah. Thank you for sharing this precious event with us.
    Namaste
    Cookie

    Reply
  38. Robin

    Sara – thank you so much for sharing your joy with readers. Being a Mimi is the best
    “job” I have, absolutely and without a doubt. Your telling of the bris and the naming was beautiful. thanks.

    Reply
  39. Wilma Greenfield

    MazelTov – I know what a thrill it is to be a Granny!
    My youngest son gave us a grandchild in February,2012. It is such a joy to watch him grow – they are in NYC and I am in Tulsa,OK – but thanks to SKYPE I see him several times a week! As I am aging (76) it is so wonderful to be in touch with a new beginning!! We’ve been in Tulsa for 5 years, but are moving back to Florida in February. I know the appeal of Florida will bring them to see Grandma and Grandpa more frequently! Our other 3 grandchildren are all grown up, and I was
    too busy working to enjoy what I have time for now!! So it goes – another blessing!! Anxious to see your book!
    It sounds like something that will speak to me! Happy
    Chunnukah! Wilma

    Reply
  40. Linda Vorzimer

    I am so happy for you! Congrats!! To everyone. And you may not remember but I am still married to a FELIX! I really like the name. Very different. Hope to see you soon!

    Reply
  41. Peggy

    I teared up reading of your new grandson’s bris, and again when the pictures loaded. Congratulations on your new status, one that will bring you more and more pleasure as the years go by: just wait till he starts walking; till he’s old enough to tell you, “I love you, Grandma (or Bubbe as the case may be ;=));” or when he reads his books to you; or . . . well, never mind, be surprised!

    One of my best moments was when my daughter and two granddaughters (ages 3 and 17 months) came to CA to visit. I had never met the younger. My daughter told me on the phone that this younger one was very shy and would not want me to even touch her “till she gets to know you.” Okay. When they got off the Airporter bus, the girls had to be awakened from a long nap, and looked very irritable. The shy girl was on my daughter’s shoulder; the older held her hand And then this little shy one, who “would not want me to hold her,” reached out and moved into my arms, clasping me round the neck, while her big sister hugged both me and my husband around our legs! Oh the rush, like breathing pure oxygen, like the energy at a birthing!

    Those girls are now 27 and almost 25, and I have never forgotten nor ever loved them any less. Grandchildren are the very best!

    Thank you for letting us share this moment with you! Thank you for letting me share mine! The best is yet to come!

    Reply
  42. Georgia Duff Schwartz

    Reading about Felix brought back memories of the birth of my first grandson. His name was not revealed for a couple of days either. And, when it finally was….well…it brought tears to my eyes…but not for the reasons one might expect.
    He is now eight years old, a very bright, personable, and handsome child with many gifts.
    His name is Mayhem.
    My daughter and her husband are well-educated, successful and contributing adults, so I don’t know what they were thinking. But, they now have four children, and all are thriving very well.
    Congratulations to you. I look forward to hearing more about Felix in your future blogs.

    Reply
  43. Mark Battat

    Mazel Tov to you and your family! The vivid description of the ceremony and the panoply of emotions brought me like so many other readers to happy tears.

    It also reminded me of my maternal Grandfather who always ‘benched’ (blessed) me whenever I saw him with the tenfold benediction of our ancestors:

    May the Lord bless you and protect you,
    May the Lord shine His face and be gracious unto you
    May the Lord lift up His face unto you and give you peace

    of which I send to all of you.

    So glad to see you back online!!

    Reply
  44. Linda

    Congratulations, Grandma. How wonderful for you! Odd, but I don’t remember meeting your father. Rachel sounds like a lovely, compassionate person. She has been admirable. You done good.

    Reply
  45. Gene Grounds

    Sara
    Very touching. Traditions all have meanings and it’s wonderful that you experienced it.
    Aloha
    Gene and Sally

    Reply
  46. Leslea

    How wonderful! Congratulations on being a grandma.
    I had thought I must have been somehow deleted from the blog notifications, so was very happy to see this one in my in box.
    I must say, I do struggle with the “tradition” of circumcision and am really not convinced that the child “doesn’t suffer much” in the moment or later in his sexual life.
    Congratulations on the new book. It sounds like it will be a lovely read, and I will look forward to it.

    Reply
  47. Hope

    Beautiful, and I cannot agree more.
    When my grand daughter was a 2 year old she declared me her “Best Friend” and I thought my heart would burst. I had stayed with my son and his wife until she was 6 months old, in lieu of having a nanny or baby sitter, and though she was too young to remember, in my heart I know SHE knows.
    I have heard grandchildren are our reward for not ‘killing’ our kids as teenagers, what ever the reason, I LOVE being a Grandma/Nana, haha

    Reply
  48. Chris Macor

    Hi Sara,
    Congratulation on your grandson and thanks for sharing the energy of his birth in your writing!
    I hope you will join us back here in Boulder on the 14th for the next Singing Cats meeting,
    Chris

    Reply
  49. Joan Tillich

    Sarah what a beautiful moving story .congratulations Felix is your love and light.i held both my granddaughters after they were born.its a miracle from God. Our love connects us to the babies and enriches or own souls as fulfillment and grace for me. Now nearly every day i get to hold my beautiful 6 month old tiare . I get to take care of her. I also get to hold and watch and play with 3 year old kalei. I know how you felt holding Felix next to your heart. I’m so happy for you and your family. We are blessed. The wind blowing softly ,the butterfly kiss ,the angel breathing on your chest. This moment is my meaning in life. I feel I’ve waited all my life to be a grandmother. Joy beyond all full of grace and passion. Love for you. I appreciate what you wrote so much.

    Reply
  50. Elizabeth Quigley

    When my best friend became a grandmother before I did, all she said to me was, “The Joy!, The Joy!” I was ignorant of the Joy so I gently teased her. After I witnessed the birth and the Joy of my only child’s son, I called my friend with the news and a profound apology for not comprehending what she meant by “The Joy”. Now I have two grandchildren – I live in “The Joy”. Congratulations to you and your children, may you live long in “The Joy”.

    Reply
  51. Bobbie Malone

    Somehow a grandmother loving a newborn as you so delightedly do is so totally universal, but never trite! I hope I someday have that opportunity! Great for you, for your kids, for Felix!

    Reply
  52. Beth Sullivan

    Dear Sarah,

    Mazal Tov Al Holedet Haben !!!

    I’m so happy for you and your lovely family. Please give them my best wishes, and I send you much love…

    Beth

    Reply
    1. Sara Post author

      Hey everyone, this is from Beth Sullivan, who created and executive produced Dr. Quinn Medicine Woman, for which I was a writer. She was ahead of her time in so many ways. She was the only tv producer who offered me a flexible schedule so I could raise my kids while working on the show. She encouraged and mentored women, minorities, and underdogs of all varieties. She was a champion who fought for what she believed in.
      Beth, it’s great to hear from you, and it appears you now know more Hebrew than I do! May blessings shower on you and your family.
      xx Sara

      Reply
  53. Dee Dee Hirsch

    You made me cry – in the good way. The best way. How sweet, touching, moving, and on and on. The photo of you with Felix sleeping on your chest is so serene and so perfect. You are so beautiful and so is your family. What a lucky little Felix to be born to all of you. Mazel Tov.

    Reply
  54. Debi

    Sara. It was my absolute pleasure to host the Bris (Rachel’s second cousin) and to enjoy being a part of the day of. I am enjoying spending time with Rachel and baby Felix, who is a sweetheart, just like his parents. Thank you for the great blog. It was so great spending time with you!

    Reply
  55. Charley Cropley

    Wow! I’m touched, Sara. You are indeed a writer.
    I too am a grandfather as of about 18 months now.
    You captured some of my experience here.
    My fading out as little Sienna fades in.

    I am interested in your upcoming book.

    I’ll sign up for it.

    In Health & Happiness

    Charley Cropley, N.D.

    Reply
  56. Harrie twrye

    Beautiful piece, Sara! Gives me goosebumps. What a remarkable life passage. We’re waiting for daughter Ariel’s tiny precious bud to ripen, fingers crossed!
    Great seeing you in Boulder. Don’t forget to visit us in Santa Cruz!

    Reply
  57. Marlene

    Sara, I knew you as a kid on HiPoint Street. Pretty sure you will know who this is.

    Just read your blog and want to say how happy I am for you on the birth of your grandson.
    I was brought to tears upon read Felix’s middle name. I remember your father so well, as well as your mother. Enjoy being a grandmother and yes it’s great that we can love and spoil them but are able to return them to their parents.

    You look so beautiful holding your grandson. In my eyes you still look the same as back then.

    Much love, Sara.

    Marlene

    Reply
  58. Carrie A

    It was great to get some insight into what my parents are experiencing with their first grandson, my Lucas. What a blessing to be a part of a loving family; congrats!

    Reply
  59. SARA S DAVIDSON

    VERY SENSITIVE AND SWEET. FINALLY TRADITION IS TRADITION AND EVERY BODY TRY TO KEEP IT . COINCIDENTLY WE HAVE THE SAME NAME, I LIVE IN RIO DE JANEIRO, WIDOW OF RICHARD DAVIDSON. I AM ALSO A HAPPY GRAND MOTHER OF THREE, AND MY BROTHER IS CALLED FELIX !! CHEERS.

    Reply
  60. Felice Brodsky

    Mazel Tov, Sara! A blessing on you and your family. I have gone through life as the female version of Felix, Felice, which also means happy or joy. It’s not a bad name to carry around in life, and I hope your new bundle of (literal) joy has a wonderful one. And to be named for your father…L’dor v’dor, from generation to generation…another source of joy!

    Reply
  61. Shane Connor

    Mazel tov Sara
    and many thanks for sharing your joyous news and reflections on the bris. I caught your blog on the way home from retreat and found it touching and bouyant – would otherwise have remainded quite ignorant! I am seriously looking forward to your next book.
    Shane

    Reply
  62. Karen Sperling

    Lovely to see a darling daughter who I knew as a baby herself, have a delicious child. Congratulations and love to all from all of us.

    Reply
    1. Sara Post author

      Thanks, Karen. Wonderful to hear from you. And yes, I remember bringing Rachel to your home soon after she was born, and you came running over with your arms open. IT makes me cry, remembering it. Much love to you.

      Reply
    2. Karen Sperling

      And I am so proud of her and all that you share about your amazing children.
      Hope to see you some time…you are always welcome.

      Reply
  63. Joey Bortnick

    This is wonderful news! You’ll be a fabulous Grandy, Sara.
    My niece just had a baby, Ari Meyer Cohen, a few days before Thanksgiving. I’m a great auntie! I had to fly from Md. back to CA before the Bris, but I got to hold the little tyke.
    What little miracles! They gave him a Hebrew name for my father, which was so thoughtful.
    I am very happy for you. Perhaps one day my nephew and your grandson will cross paths. I wish you very merry holidays,
    Joey Bortnick

    Reply
    1. Sara Post author

      Hi Joey, good to hear from you. And congrats to you and your family. I’ll be in Tiburon on April 2 next year, giving a talk at Congregation Kol Shofar. Hope you can come, and we can meet in person. Warmest, Sara

      Reply
  64. Anne Biggs

    Sara,
    I was working on my novel wight he TV on and an old TV show came on, and listed you as the screen writer. I remembered reading Loose Change years ago, and loving it. I had grown up in the 60′s and it brought so much back to be. I loved your writing and still have the paperback of your book. I decided to go on line to see what you are doing. Congratulations on your grandson. Any day now we are expecting out 3rd grandchild. We have two older ones, so it is like starting all over, and she is from my son. I can’t wait to hold her in my arms, listen to her breath. You are an amazing writer and I look forward to your new book. Any advice to a person taking on a second career as a writer? Best of luck to you.

    Reply
  65. Bharath

    It’s great to read about a person’s perspective and the feeling you have felt during an event which could’ve been overlooked as ‘just a part of a tradition’. Sometime we’re all caught up in things that don’t mean much exchanging them for much more valuable experiences. I’m glad you had that moment and felt what you’ve felt. OM! :)

    Reply
  66. Rabbi Rachel Barenblat

    What a beautiful post this is.

    I remember the moments of my son’s bris as interminable, too.

    And I remember pacing with our colicky infant for hours, and doing the “driving in the middle of the night” trick. Of course, my baby is only four, so that memory is closer for me than it is for you!

    We come and we go from the same mysterious space. Yes.

    Reply