Every New Baby Is a Miracle

Last week’s post with my Legacy Letter to my new granddaughter Mia stirred up a moving response. Thanks to all for sharing in my joy.

As an estate planner, I have a special perspective on the significance of grandkids. Providing for your heirs in a meaningful way is usually the driving force behind a thoughtful estate plan. My mission is to help families create responsible inheritors who are prepared to receive the inheritance that will come their way. And by “the inheritance,” I mean not only money, but also the passing down of a family’s heritage. My prayer is that Mia and our other five grandchildren will safeguard the precious legacy bequeathed to us by our ancestors.

A new baby is a miracle from heaven. As I held Mia only moments after her birth and peered into that angelic face, I was overcome with awe at how a new baby comes into the world. Because of our family’s experience with pregnancy loss, I feel even more acutely blessed. When a healthy baby arrives, I don’t take it for granted.

For those readers who are newer to my blog, I’ll share again what Laurie and I experienced. After a perfect full-term pregnancy, we went to the hospital on February 11, 1982, expecting to return home with a newborn child. For unknown reasons, during the delivery, we heard words we’ll never forget: “There’s no heartbeat.” Laurie and I powered through that tragedy and were blessed with another pregnancy a few months later.

About three weeks before the due date, I was at work and my assistant interrupted a meeting to tell me Laurie was in labor. How could that be? There had been no sign of contractions earlier. We rushed to the hospital, and on February 11, 1983 (one year to the day after our loss), Adam was born. I am convinced there was divine intervention.

Our daughter Lizzy’s first-born came into the world in an emergency delivery after being under stress. It was a déjà vu horrifying experience, but thankfully ended with a healthy (though premature) Stella. Lizzy’s second pregnancy produced Juliet, this time an easy delivery but no less a miracle.

Years later, Lizzy went through a calendar year with three miscarriages (two of which were ectopic and life-threatening). But Lizzy and Ira held onto their faith and decided to try once more. The pregnancy started out a disaster, as we were informed Lizzy had once again miscarried. Days later, at a doctor appointment, Lizzy heard words she will never forget: “There’s a heartbeat.” About eight months later, Ollie was born—another miracle.

Lizzy uses her experience to help others struggling with pregnancy difficulties. She founded the “Real Love, Real Loss” movement to acknowledge the unborn souls of lost pregnancies and provide support and comfort to suffering families. She raised funds to donate a Torah to the Israeli Defense Forces, which they carry with them into battle this very day. Lizzy’s message to the troops in giving the Torah was that each letter represents an unborn soul who is looking out over our soldiers and protecting them.

Perhaps now you see why I regard each healthy newborn as a miracle. I am one very, very grateful Zaidy.

A final word to answer questions about my choice to be called Zaidy, the Yiddish word for grandfather. As explained last week, it’s a tribute to my Zaidy Eliezer. The female counterpart is Bubbie, but Laurie couldn’t relate to the stereotype of that visual image, so she chose “Mimi” instead. I once heard a joke that the word Zaidy means “shrinking man,” which certainly applies to me as my shirt size has gone from XL to L to M to S. And finally, there are lots of ways to spell it in English, but I chose my spelling in honor of Zaidy’s Deli, our favorite Denver restaurant, and its terrific owner and friend Gerard Rudofsky.

(1) Marvin Blum’s daughter Lizzy Savetsky with husband Ira and three miracle children dedicating a Torah in Israel as the scribe inks in the final letters. Each letter commemorates an unborn soul from a pregnancy loss. (2) Lizzy and Ira Savetsky rejoicing with Israeli Defense Forces who carry that Torah with them into battle, to be protected by each of those unborn souls.