I have been so anxious to get on here and tell you about the newest member of our family: Coen! It’s hard to believe Coen has been with us for a whole week–he was born February 16–but he is just the best. Super cute, super easy, super cuddly–our hearts are full!
For those of you who prayed for the labor and delivery–THANK YOU! Some of you know that my first labor was hard and long. It lasted about 20 hours and I developed pre-eclampsia in the middle of it, so I had a lot of fear going into this labor.
In the days leading up to Coen’s birth, I often prayed for courage and endurance, but I also prayed for a smooth labor, and that’s basically what we got. I was in labor about 14 hours, but the delivery was literally 5 minutes long. In fact, the delivery was so quick that my doctor didn’t make it in time. An ice storm kept him from getting to the hospital quickly, so he missed it! But it all turned out ok, and I am thankful for the way it unfolded.
One of the big surprises about Coen was his size. My first son, Isaac, was a tiny little chicken nugget. He weighed 5 pounds 12 ounces even though he was 11 days late. He was perfectly healthy–just small–so I expected Coen to be the same.
That’s why I about fell off the bed when the nurse informed me that Coen was 8 pounds and 4 ounces. I don’t know what is going on with these babies of mine, but Coen is already asserting his own unique self.
Some of you have asked about his name, which is a little unusual. Coen is a Germanic name that means brave. The Germanic heritage is a nod to both mine and Ike’s backgrounds, and we just love the meaning. I pray Coen will live into his name, becoming a man who embodies courage–not in a worldly, loud, or aggressive sense–but as one who steadily witnesses to the life of Christ, showing love when it’s hard and laying himself down for the weak and down-trodden. I hope he will be brave like Jesus was brave.
Coen’s name also seems fitting since he has already been head-butted, poked, and squished by his loving older brother. Isaac is actually great with Coen–he’s been a wonderful helper, and he loves to hug and kiss Coen–but he’s also a rough and tumble boy who wants desperately to play with his new brother. The last part hasn’t gone great, but I love the intent of his heart.
That’s a little snapshot of our first week with Coen, but before I sign off I want to take a moment to praise God for His faithfulness. This week I was reminded that God is the same as He always was, even though I am tempted to doubt it. With my first baby, we never could have predicted the way the labor went. I never could have guessed that I would develop pre-eclampsia, or that Isaac would be in distress, or that my labor would last so long.
We went into my first labor with a birth plan, but my body threw that plan out the window, and that produced in my heart a lot of fear.
However, it was also true that throughout my first labor, God went before us. Every step of the way, God gave us the wisdom and discernment we needed to make good decisions that we never could have planned for.
As I worked through my fears about this second labor, I returned to that story again and again. I remembered God’s faithfulness in the past, and clung to it in the present. This time around we hardly even had a birth plan because we had learned how feeble our plans can be. Instead, the wisdom of Proverbs 19:21 was our guiding truth:
Many are the plans in a person’s heart, but it is the Lord’s purpose that prevails.
This verse reminded me to hold my expectations about labor–and life–very loosely. I desperately want to be in control, but my last labor taught me how little control I have. This time around I tried to stand on the truth that it is God’s good plans that prevail, and He would go before us like He had in the past.
And, He did. Once again, God gave us the wisdom we needed to make the right decisions at the right time. He made our paths straight, and it was the best birth plan we could have had.
Thank you for the many, MANY kind words and well wishes that you all have sent my way. I have read and cherished every single one. We have felt so loved and celebrated since Coen was born, and I can’t wait to share more about our growing family with you.
Love to you all!