"You have a beautiful son."
I take James up in his bassinet. He has been sleeping ever since I feed him. I’ve been supplied with diapers and bottles. The nurse said that she’ll come up and check on him in about an hour. When I get to the third floor I am not met by Dr. Henderson. Instead Amber’s family is there. I freeze.
“I didn’t know you were here,” I say.
“Dr. Henderson called us,” Donna says standing.
“I’m sorry I didn’t call you. I was…”
“Its okay, honey.” She pats my shoulder and looked over James. “Oh sweetheart, he’s beautiful.”
“Thank you.” I reach down to pull him out and hand him over to her. She expertly takes him in her arms.
“Oh he’s adorable. Look at that face. Those are Amber’s eyes. I can tell already.”
I give a halfhearted smile.
“Have you heard anything about her yet?” I ask.
“Not yet. They said she’s still in surgery.” I don’t know what to say so I just nod. Everyone else comes over to see the baby. Gerard pats me on the back as his girlfriend, Anna, and Amber’s dad look over James.
“Here’s your grandson, gramps,” Donna says as she hands James over to Amber’s father.
He sits down and looks over my son’s face, “I guess I owe you twenty buck sister. You’re older than me and I still became a grandparent before you.”
“Pay up, little brother,” she replies.
I am glad there are making light of the situation. I am sure I’d probably still be in panic mode without them. Gerard wraps his arm around my shoulder.
“He’s a cute kid,” he says. “That’s because he takes after Amber.”
I give a halfhearted laugh.
“Except that he has Frank’s nose,” Anna says coming to stand behind Gerard.
“Yeah, but we can’t all be perfect.”
“He has my hair too,” I announce.
Amber’s dad pulls the little blue beanie off James’ head and reveals the dark soft fluff.
“He definitely got that from you. Amber was a cue ball when she was born,” he says. “It was a month before her hair started growing in and when it did it was so blonde it was almost white. It got red as she got older and died it black a few times. ”
“Sometimes I miss the black. Red suits her though.”
“She looks less like her mother with red hair.”
“Has anyone heard from her?” I ask.
He shakes his head.
“Not since after she left for Russia. Not even a postcard. I’m sure she doesn’t have a clue that she’s a grandma.”
“It’s too bad.”
“Her loss,” he says.
“Can I hold him now?” Gerard asks.
“Let me hold him first,” Anna, who is like part of the family, argues.
“I’m related to him. I get to hold him first,” Gerard answer, sticking his tongue out.
Anna just sighs as Gerard sits down. The baby is exchanged from Donna to Gerard. Donna stands back to take my hand. She gives me a weak smile.
“How you holding up, honey?” she asks.
“I’m trying. I’m not really… succeeding,” I confide.
“Well, you have a beautiful son.”
I nod, “Thank you.”