Friday, September 11, 2009

Family: Rose Mae Sothern

Last week, Nikki and I drove around New Orleans listening to Glen David Andrews' new album, Walking Through Heaven's Gate, trying to get Nikki some distraction from the discomfort of the ninth month of her pregnancy. The last track on the album, Family, struck both of us and gave us some sense of what was approaching for us. It's a spoken word piece with New Orleans poet, Chuck Perkins.

Perkins describes the birth of his child:

It was watching my wife
After eleven hours of labor,

Whose eyes and face

No longer possessed the words

To describe her pain,

So she pushed.

It was twenty years of anticipating

What my child would be

And who she would be

And when I saw the tip of her head,

Before the slap,

Before the cry,

Before I saw her eyes even,

It was like I was about to meet a long lost friend

Whom I had never met.

Early this morning, after an epic, unmedicated labor, Nikki gave birth to Rose Mae Sothern here in New Orleans. I am in awe of Nikki and the little baby girl that came into the world this morning. New Orleans artists have a gift for describing the indescribable, but as much as I like Perkins' description of child birth, he doesn't fully capture the feeling of seeing your wife give birth to your child. I am not sure anyone could.


  1. Congratulations, may the feeling of awe and wonder continue for all 3 of you.

  2. Best wishes & hugs to you all! She is precious.

  3. Congratulations, Billy, she is beautiful. And welcome to the world of parenthood. The adventure has just begun.

  4. Hooray to all three of you! You're in for an awesome journey.

  5. Mazel tov to all of you, and welcome to the world, shayna maideleh. 8-)

  6. What they all said above me - especially about this just being the first moment of awe now that you are a parent. There's more to come!


  7. Thrilled to pieces for you, Billy and Nikki. How did you come up with the name? It is so sweet. And Southern! :)

  8. Congratulations Billy and Nikki. Rose Mae is beautiful. Have fun!