Happy Birthday Little Boy!

April 13, 2014.  It was 4 years ago on this day that my life was changed forever.  A life of being able to do what I want, when I want came to an end.  And the life of sacrifice, no sleep and me-in-4th-place (God, wife, son..) began.  The moment I saw him I cried, hard.  Huge tears of joy ran down my face, I closed my eyes and thanked God for such an amazing gift.  He was healthy and precious and I fell in love in an instant.  I declared right there in that moment that I would give all of myself to him for the rest of my life.  What a joy it is to be a father. It is immensely hard some days and full of total bliss most others, and I could not imagine my life any other way.

Some may know, but most do not, that it was a very difficult delivery for my wife.  Labor was progressing nicely and the doctor said the baby was doing great, head down in the uterus and ready to come out.  Well…what was supposed to be a head was actually his butt.  As much as he wanted to enter this world, he couldn’t. He was breached, positioned like a flying-V guitar, coming out butt first.  With his heart rate elevating, everyone went into emergency c-section mode, scrambling to the emergency room…Heather on the rolling bed…nurses and the doctor speaking in loud medical terms…me, in scrubs, clumsily following behind them, carrying all of our suitcases and coats to some unknown room down the hall.  In the end, the procedure went well and our little guy did great. My wife…not so much.

I won’t go into all the details, but to make a long story short, I almost lost her.  She lost so much blood, and it would not stop.  So much that she needed emergency surgery and an extended stay in the ICU afterwards.  When I saw her in the ICU 7 hours after my son was born I almost collapsed.  I thought she was dead.  White as a sheet of paper, tubes all over, heart rate at 190, eyes rolled into the back of her head, medical staff scrambling…I was told she was in a coma. The complexity of emotions at that point are hard to describe:  I have a newborn baby boy in the hospital nursery on one end of the hospital, but we can’t hold him yet because we’re at the other end of the hospital in Intensive Care because my wife is on death’s doorstep.  Incredible joy and incredible terror all within 7 hours.  But then I had a moment with God that I will remember forever…

My mom and brother Quinn came to the ICU.  They took me down to the cafeteria because I needed to eat.  Still walking around in my scrubs, tired, emotionally wrecked and numb, I needed nutrition quickly. As I was crying and drinking water at the same time, my Mom pulled out her phone and showed it to me.  She said, “This is for you”.  It was her daily devotional phone app that said “The eyes of the Lord are toward the righteous and his ears are open to their cries for help…The righteous cry out, and the Lord hears them; he delivers them from all of their troubles.” Psalm 34:15, 17.  (I’m teary as I type this).  SO MANY PEOPLE were praying for my wife at the time.  Entire churches.  The word was out…and the Lord heard the prayers.  I wanted to be with my wife, so I slammed my water, took the elevator back up to the ICU and there she was, sitting up in bed with her glasses on, looking back to normal (although still connected with a thousand tubes and wires).  My knees buckled and I cried “SWEETIE!!!”.  One half-hour before, I left the ICU and I thought I would never see my wife alive again.  The nurses and doctors assured me she was okay and with that, I sprinted down the halls of the hospital to go see my little boy and hold him.  I was greeted by Pastor Dave Learned up in the room as I held my son and he prayed over Peter, my wife and us.  It was BEAUTIFUL!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

So this day means so much more to me than just another kid’s birthday.  It is a day I am reminded of God’s faithfulness to me, His blessings and His sovereignty in all things.  And I have an immense appreciation and love for my marriage, my wife and my son, for I almost lost them both on that day.  I take nothing for granted.  Every day is a gift!  Thank you Lord for knowing me, hearing me and loving me, and on this day, thank you for my wife and son.  These pictures are possible because of the faithfulness of God in my life.  He will never leave us, or forsake us.  You can count on that.  HAPPY BIRTHDAY PETER!!! WE LOVE YOU!!!!

Such a charmer.  Pre-school pic…

Doing what a 3-almost-4 year old does best…

    

   

He loves his Panda, which we have cleverly named Pandy Pand

   

He loves his cousins…

He really loves his Umma…

      

He loves to rock…

   

He loves taking the Metra and he’s finally learning how to ride a bike…

   

He loves imitating his Papa…

This is us…

 

 

 

 

2 comments
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  • DerbyApril 14, 2018 - 9:51 am

    Heather and Ryan,  Oh my God  what a wonderful story about how God  had his loving ARMS round Heather and Peter.. YOUR a Beautiful family… Many blessings.  peter is a cutieReplyCancel

    • adminApril 14, 2018 - 10:44 am

      Thank you so much Derby! Warms my heart to see your name. 🙂 Hope you are doing well!ReplyCancel