Until recently, it had been some time since I held a newborn child. My now two grown children blessed me with six grandchildren. As a result of the good fortune of those accumulative births, I have fed, changed, bathed, and bounced on my lap a fair share of babies. But recently when I went to visit the child born to my first cousin’s daughter and son-in-law, I was a little nervous about holding the infant.
Let me take a moment to explain my kinship to the new infant. My first cousin, Lori’s, daughter had a beautiful baby boy. Lori’s daughter is my first cousin once removed. The child born to Lori’s daughter and her husband is my first cousin twice removed. Contrary to what I used to think (and what some people still do), that newborn is not my second or third cousin. Such family structure would be too easily understood. Instead, there is – in my opinion – an illogical and confusing design of the genealogical tree that determines the status of cousins and other extended family members. So, to simplify the relationship of the newest infant in our family to me, I will henceforth refer to him as my distant, baby cousin. That clarified, let’s get back to the point. Continue reading “Pass the Baby, Please”