A Stone's Throw: What makes me great


Betty Stone



My great-granddaughter, the first one in a new generation in our family, Mackenzie Loecher, was born Oct. 17. She is really different from this family of blue-eyed redheads and blondes. She has very dark eyes and hair. We shall probably "mirate" over her for a long time to come. 


My first thought was that I had never had a baby that little, but her birth weight says I did. They just look like incredibly little human beings, don't they? Mackenzie did especially because they had her lying on what looked like a tray resting on that long serving table beside her mother's bed. In fact, she looked as if she might be a wrapped-up bird about to be served en croute. The terrible things you think! 


She seemed very placid, very serene, however. I hope she will stay that way for her parents' sake. They were kicked out of the hospital the next day, even after a section. Back when my children were born, we stayed in the hospital a week and held court. Friends came to see us, brought gifts and looked at the babies through a protective glass picture window separating the babies' nursery from the germ-bearing public. Daddies and friends hovered around the window pointing out their babies. Looking at the new babies was a kind of entertainment for hospital visitors and any workers who could spare a few seconds every now and then. After all, they were "on stage" for about a week. 


Frankly, I liked that a lot better than what they do now. They shove even the post-section mothers out before they can catch their breath, much less recover. We have a population that can keep up with the Chinese peasants in Pearl Buck's "The Good Earth," who gave birth in the fields, arose and kept on working. 


I think it is all because of insurance. No one involved with the physical process has any say-so in the matter. Neither patient's condition nor physician's compassion matters one whit. 


Mackenzie Loecher has long gone home now. She has even paid a visit to her grandparents. To their credit, they have invested in some kind of contraption that apparently can serve as bed, bassinet, playpen or bathtub. I think it takes an engineer like her granddaddy to work the thing. We live in a "Brave New World" like Aldous Huxley's. This whole process is taking me back to the literature of the '20s, before I was born. 


Still, she seems to thrive. I do not know about the parents. 


One thing is sure, thank God. Life goes on. I pray her life will be blessed with peace, health and prosperity. I know it is a lot to ask. 


Betty Boyls Stone is a freelance writer, who grew up in and lives in Columbus.


Betty Boyls Stone is a freelance writer, who grew up in Columbus.


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