A Literary Christmas Celebration presents Jeanette W. Hill





Christmas all month with WrittenVoicesBlog.com. During the month of December, we will feature an author or writer who will share their favorite Christmas memory or thoughts with us. Remember to treat a family member or friend to a great gift – purchase the books featured!

My Christmas Memory
By Jeanette W. Hill

It was my nine month old daughter Camille’s first Christmas. I remember her chocolate brown skin and curly hair sitting by the Christmas tree. She had a cold and was cranky which was not attributed to her cold. We snapped photos as her older sister excitedly jumped around all the presents with her name on them.

Camille had no idea what all the commotion was about and kept pushing us away from her, angry and whining at being bothered so early in the morning. It was the sweetest sound I’d heard in months.

At seven months, I’d gone into premature labor. My obstetrician prepared me for what he said was inevitable. There was less than a 20% chance that the baby would live and even if it did, it would be severely handicapped it would have to be institutionalized. No attempt would be made to save the baby nor to force it to abort. Nature would have to take its course. I offered a feeble but heartfelt prayer.

After twenty-seven hours of painful labor, she came. I watched with the nurses and interns as my doctor took the motionless, blue-black body from my womb. After the customary swat from the doctor, my heart sank as the nurse said, ‘She’s not breathing’. The other nurse said, “Oh, how sad.” The doctor hit her again, still no response. He paused and hit her a third time, so hard that I winced. Immediately, we all heard what would become her familiar response of displeasure…her strained, angry scream.

Our trial wasn’t over yet, at midnight I was awaked by the hospital priest and several nurses. The baby had to be rushed to the Neo-natal hospital. My visit found her tied, like the cross in her incubator with needles and tubes all over her. I demanded that the nurse untie her. She did and passed her to me. Within seconds, Camille yanked all of the needles and tubes out of her head. The nurse in the doorway said, “Don’t worry, she’s too mean or something to die!”

My mother told us she had prayed and laid the baby’s condition on her altar and despite what the medical tests said, Camille would be fine. Months of ups and downs followed. Both my mother and the nurse were right. Thirty-odd years later it’s still true, Camille has ‘something’, God’s favor.


Jeanette is a playwright, producer, and director. She is the founder and Creative Director of Sight Ain’t Seeing Productions which includes the annual Believe Beyond Boundaries Creative Arts Camp. She is also the producer of a local cable television series, The Amen Circle which chronicles the lives of several Christians who live in a changing urban area. She is a devoted wife and mother as well as being an active member of the Sunday School and Womens Ministry at the Mt. Sinai Baptist Church.  She can be contacted at jwhill@sasprod.org or on her website is www.sasprod.org.

There are 4 comments for this article
  1. wvoices-admin at 11:15 am

    Thank you for sharing! God’s favor and answered prayer are truly the best gifts of all. There like that commercial, “priceless.” Many blessings to you during this season and I’m looking forward to hearing more about your productions in 2009.


  2. LaShaunda at 8:50 am


    Beautiful story. Our family has a premmie story too. My nephew was born at six months. We saw how God showed out with this little fellow. He’s 11 and you’d never know he started his life off hard.

    Many blessings to you and your family.

  3. Linda Beed at 1:11 am

    Jeanette I thank you for sharing this touching story with the world.

    God is indeed merciful.


  4. Jeanette Hill at 8:02 am

    To all, thank you for your encouragement! I love what Ty is doing with this project. Sometimes we forget what a difference the ‘little’ memories can make in our lives.

    Thanks, again!