Turning Into Dad: According to Plan

Labor began and things were looking great. We had high hopes that my wife could pull through a natural birth in a relatively short amount of time. On paper, the circumstances leading up to our admittance at the hospital looked about as good as you could get.

But as labor continued in earnest our hopes began descending slowly like a crashing helicopter. After a few hours, they fell like a meteor to earth. The pain turned excruciating, the baby wasn’t lying the right way, the baby wasn’t getting enough oxygen. After 8 or 9 hours, the doctor came in and recommended a C-Section. Of all the things we expected, this was least among them.

It seemed like the only course, though, and off we went to the operating room. The baby came out healthy and with a lusty cry. Some early fears about how healthy he’d be faded out and the child rested with his two exhausted parents in a recovery area. It was here we started glimpsing a new problem. Feeding wasn’t working as well. Because he couldn’t be with his mom right away, it threw off my wife’s body and his inclinations for sustenance.

From then on it has been one hurdle after another. We had to rethink how we wanted to feed him, turning to formula as a supplement. But this caused stomach aches and reflux so then we had to give him medicine to help. This seemed to work a little but then his weight wasn’t gaining as well as the doctors wanted. He finally got up to weight but then we found out he has thyroid issues.

To say the least, the early days of our child’s life have not gone according to plan. We wanted to do everything as natural as possible with delivery, with feeding, giving him the least amount of vaccines and medicines as possible. Instead, we had to upend all of that because nothing played out as we hoped. There’s almost a dark humor to it all, like a Three Stooges comedy where one pratfall follows upon the heels of another endlessly.

Of course, most things in life never go the way we think they will. If God has shown us anything in this first month, it’s that we can make all the plans we’d like but what ultimately happens depends on God’s will. We can’t control our son’s health, growth, development, or personality. God has a unique plan for him and our task is to roll with the current, providing what he needs and giving him the best love we can offer. This is hard to do, given the stress each new hurdle causes, but it is the stuff of life and teaches us to have a greater trust in God.

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