I'm was struggling so hard not to shout from the rooftops 'we have a granddaughter' It wasn't our news to share and I chanced my luck walking up town with a giant pink balloon with 'it's a girl' written all over it.
Our son and DIL didn't want visitors at the hospital other than grandparents and siblings and as soon as you tell one person, there's a risk they'll stick something on facebook to congratulate them or tag you in a grandparent meme. They wanted to make the announcement in their own time and make sure they told all their family and friends first.
We were all provided with a list of people we could tell when the baby was born, but not to say she'd gone into labour, as no one wanted to spend 2 days replying with 'promise to let you know when the baby is born'
When labour started and people were asking 'any sign of the baby yet?' I was bought a bit of time as her due date was the 20th and the baby arrived on the 16th and I could honestly say 'no, not yet' however at the time of writing the baby was 2 days old and I hated lying to friends and I'm pretty sure with the number of visits I've made to Gloucester this week (everyday) people are starting to guess.
I wish now when she told everyone she was pregnant that I'd added 2 weeks to the due date, that would have fended off a lot of questions this week.
I am extremely privileged to have such a wonderful relationship with my son and DIL and over the past week have spent a lot of time with the in laws and we all seem to be getting along very well.
My DIL will say 'no thanks' she will message me and say a time/date isn't convenient and will suggest an alternate one. She asks for advice, she listens if I suggest something and will politely say 'no thanks' or will tell me exactly what she would like from me.
As soon as she was admitted to hospital on Sunday night to have the baby, I was ready. I had nappies, pads, food, drinks etc in the car in case she needed anything. I had a book and snacks for anyone waiting and plenty of change for the drinks machines and car park. I headed over to the hospital to visit Child 1 for the afternoon and on my way home popped into the hospital to say 'good luck' they seemed pleased to see me.
There was a Baby group messaging on FB, which 2 and 2a updated us all throughout the day. Her parents, Peter and I and her brother and sister. I opted to stay away from the hospital during the day, but was nearby with child 1 again returning to the hospital at 5pm and staying until the baby was born.
I was very aware not to step on her mother's toes, there was no need to worry, but I didn't return to the hospital until her parents arrived.
I spent some time in the delivery room in the later stages when the contractions were every 2-3 minutes apart, but had no intention of staying in the delivery suite and her sister and I left to spend the next 3 hours sitting on chairs in the corridor, watching the ward doors waiting for the announcement that came in the form of a message on FB 'SHE is here' They'd opted not to know the sex of the baby in advance.
Once our son emerged from the room, he called his father, his gran and then I made the other calls to his brothers, aunts, cousins who were on the approved contact list.
The baby is now a week old. I had a day off from visiting the hospital as I knew the other Grandmother had that day off work and between us we've been to the house everyday to look after the influx of visitors, siblings, friends, great grandparents. I'm off to Belfast now for a week as another son is getting married, then my husband is returning with me to meet his grandchild for the first time.
I have worried I may be making a nuisance of myself, that I might outstay my welcome and very concerned I'd say something that might not be wanted, as in advice. But I don't have to worry, friends with new babies 6 months and 3 months have been around to offer more up to date and relevant advice about a whole range of things.
I asked permission yesterday to make a facebook post to announce we are now grandparents and used a photo of one of the cards we were sent. I've shared the news with friends online in private messages and with the odd photo in messenger and the babies name. Our son wants to know what business is it of people he doesn't know, but our DIL has met a lot of our friends and appreciates their value in our lives and their genuine interest in our family as we do of theirs.