ITS ALL ABOUT MARINA DALE
Trip Start Nov 19, 2007
217Trip End Ongoing
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Where I stayed
Mercury and Carlee's house
Mercury is a natural Dad. He carries her around with the ease of carrying his dog Pepper Long-Shanks. Marina is calm and comfortable in his hands. Already he was changing diapers and swaddling her like a pro! When she fussed, she calmed down with his touch.
We arrived at Mercury and Carlee's home on Manzanita Road, Bainbridge Island, Washington, Friday August 27th
We all greeted each other and showed Merc and Carlee our new RV whom we now call, "Orca" for the black and white tribal markings on his exterior. Carlee was marvelously pregnant but I guess Marina had a different date in mind. Carlee did not give birth on the 28th or the 29th and began feeling like tightening her wagon circle to include only those few most intimate family members and friends. Andy and I lived in Orca across the road where Mercury had cleared a great area out of the woods. Andy and Merc ran electricity to the spot. Just a few trips to Home Depot and we had a home that made us neighbors instead of guests. Out of the driveway and into our own woodsy pad. During the next week while trying to pretend we weren't waiting for Carlee to go into labor, we got to be with Mercury as he continued on his Real Estate business as well as keeping his sights on the ongoing restoration of their wonderful fixer upper home on Madison Ave, where he plans to raise his family
The call came on Monday morning, September 6th - Labor Day -... Merc told us they were leaving for the 5:30AM Ferry to Seattle to get Carlee to the birthing center with her Mid-Wife and assistant. Doug and Barbara had arrived and will be with them the whole way. Andy and I were to stay behind and help in any way we could to keep the home fires burning. We had hoped to feed the chickens and walk Pepper but already these daily chores were covered by their neighbor, Nicole. So we waited. And waited. Barbara called with updates telling us how Carlee was working like a champion in her labor and Mercury was talking to her and loving her through every turn and moment. Crying with and for her when the labor got tough and telling her how grateful he was to her for going through this for them. In his own words he told her she was magnificent in her strength and he loved her more deeply than ever.
Carlee had chosen to give birth at the Birthing Center in Seattle where her Mid-wife could deliver the baby with her
Once in the delivery room at the hospital she was attended by a staff of 8 nurses and a doctor as well as the Midwife and assistant, Mercury and Barbara. Doug was in the waiting room playing the more traditional role of the man waiting while the women labored. The harrowing experience of being moved from one facility to another after driving for 25 minutes while in the last and final stages of labor was made more bearable by having Barbara and Doug there to organize, get directions and drive. Carlee and Marina were hard at work for another hour or more before Marina Dale was placed on Carlee's chest in her waiting hands. Mercury stood guard making sure the lights were low, that Marina would be allowed to rest atop her Mom immediately after birth letting the umbilical cord finish its work on its own before cutting her free
Mercury stayed in the hospital room with Carlee and Marina overnight arriving back on Bainbridge Tuesday around 6:00pm. Carlee was beautiful and walking although tired and in need of many days of rest and recuperation. Mamaloons and Me, Granny Po or Podie - Marina will have to help decide what to call me- were just the women to help in that. For the next week, Barbara helped Carlee in all intimate ways while we both shopped and cooked the current meals as well as got meals packed up in their freezer for later. Alden made and baked the most gorgeous pies for us all to revel in. One a Banana Cream Caramel and one a fresh blueberry. They were good enough to make any meal seem like the best meal you have ever had. Mamaloons made sure Marina got to watch her Uncle make pie to celebrate her arrival!
A week of wanting to be ever present, holding, changing, bathing and dressing Miss Marina and yet also wanting to be non-invasive had Andy and I following Carlee's needs for privacy, Barbara's lead and Mercury's openness for us to join him in his errands
It was time for Mercury, Carlee and Marina to build their routine as a family of three. Barb was to stay around for any help still needed, so Andy and I packed up our meager set up and took to the road. My heart beats on with a new knowledge from a new perspective. To see myself as a Grandmother helps make my aging more beautiful and meaningful. I love Carlee for loving my son and for giving him a perfect baby girl. As I grow into my new status I pray for grace and gentleness and compassion for others so I may live in harmony with the ever changing needs of myself and my loved ones.