A miracle. A result of passion. A beginning.

12 days old, passed from one delighted woman to the next to be praised and cooed at.

12 days old. Brand new. He slept through the attention, never opening his eyes or mouth except when he periodically stretched his curved form.

It was easy to imagine him wrapped in the dark cocoon of his mother’s warmth; his limbs had yet to straighten and he slept as undisturbed as he had been for nine months prior.

Someone suggested to my mother-in-law that I should hold him – to give me ideas for my own marriage, now safely past the one-year milestone. I joked that my husband and I are not ready for parenthood, but I could not keep myself from touching him.

Once, twice, three times. His balled fist, tiny toenails and soft hair. I was sure my usually gentle hands would harm him.

I never held him. Three touches were enough to bring tears to my eyes and a lump to my throat.

Flawless. Gentle. Helpless. Gorgeous.

A miracle.