Our Homebirth Journey and Stories


The Story of Our Journey

After our first five children were born in very typical hospital settings, the Lord led us to homebirth for our last four children.

When I was pregnant with Molly I heard about someone I know who had a homebirth.  I remember my first thought was "She's crazy!" Then, knowing what a godly couple this is, I thought that she must have a lot more faith (and a much higher pain tolerance) than me.  It was never something that even *remotely* appealed to me.  I liked my epidurals, thank you very much!

When we were expecting MaryVance, we moved to Mississippi.  The prenatal care I received was adequate, I have no complaints about that.  Being that we had only lived here for a short while, we had no one to care for our other children when I was birthing MaryVance. Our ob was very sympathetic (and liked pitocin!) and agreed to induce at 40 weeks.  (Knowing that our other babies were born at 41 and 42 weeks should have been a clue that this wasn't the best idea...)  The induction went smoothly but took a very long time as she was just not ready to be born.  Her labor and delivery were very "normal".  However, the rest of the hospital stay was horrid!   Let's just say there's a reason why Mississippi is a "medically underserved area"...  I won't go into details but when I got home I remember telling Tony that if we have any more they will either be in Memphis or at home!!!

During the pregnancy with MaryVance, the Lord had been dealing with me in a lot of areas.  One of those areas was trusting Him.  He kept asking me "Do you trust me?" and I'd answer "of course I do!".  He kept asking me over and over and over and I just couldn't understand why?  Wasn't I answering correctly?  I did trust Him--He is God!  So I began to ponder exactly what trusting Him really meant and to try and discern if there was some area in which I was not trusting Him.  After much prayer, He revealed it to me--my family!  I was not really trusting Him with my family.   Our decision to follow the Lord into homebirthing was directly related to our decision to give our attempt at 'family planning' back to Him.

We prayed very diligently to be in His will when I was pregnant with Elijah and He led us to homebirth.  We prayed again with Isaac's pregnancy and He led us to homebirth again.  If He blesses us again, we will bathe the decision to homebirth in prayer and if
He leads, we will homebirth again.  It is a truly amazing experience!!!
note:  The Lord also lead us to have homebirths with our eighth and ninth children, Joseph and Nehemiah.

 4 Feb 2002

Birthing Elijah

Great is Thy Faithfulness, Great is thy faithfulness
Morning by morning New mercies I see
All I have needed Thy hand hath provided
Great is thy faithfulness, Lord unto me

This is the song the Lord gave to me on the morning of February 4, 2002.  Why is this significant?

I was awakened by contractions several times during the night and they continued to increase in frequency and duration throughout the day. Around noon, I realized I was really in labor and called Tony to come home and called Martina (our primary midwife). Martina said she'd check back with me around 3:00 to see how labor was progressing. At that time, contractions were about every 7 minutes and lasting around 45 seconds. It was during this time, as the contractions were strengthening, that I began to hum Great is Thy Faithfulnessduring the contractions. I can't tell you what a comfort it was to me to be constantly reminded of His faithfulness. When I would get to the part that says 'All I have needed, thy hand hath provided' the contraction would peak and go back down. It was so neat to see the Lord comforting me in this way.

When Martina called at 3:00, she said she and Kim (the other midwife) were on their way. At about 3:30 I nursed MaryVance to
sleep and then laid down with her. I dozed between contractions until about 4:30 when they became hard enough that I felt I needed to get up. When I got up MaryVance woke up and was fussy so I nursed her again.

Just a little before 5:00, my water broke--a new sensation for me as it has never broken with any of my other babies. I called Martina
to make sure they were on their way. She said they would be here within 10 minutes. Martina arrived at 5:00 and around 5:30 checked me. I was dialated to 5 and having contractions every 3 minutes at that time, though the contractions did spread out a little after she arrived.

Around 7:30, I decided to try relaxing in a warm tub. The contractions continued to strengthen and lengthen and I was able to
finish the entire chorus and part of the first verse of 'my' song. I was no longer able to hum, but was singing the song in my mind. The first verse talks about 'harvest' (which was very meaningful to me) and about 'bright hope for tomorrow'. I kept thinking about how this baby was our 'bright hope for tomorrow' and this gave me such a focus and the strength I needed for that contraction. I got frustrated once and Tony gently reminded me that the contractions only come one at a time. I know it sounds so simple, but
it really helped me to be able to just focus on the moment--whether it be contraction or a rest period between them. Tony was such a pillar of strength for me.

Around 8:00, Martina came in to check the baby's heartbeat. I asked her at this time when she was planning to check me again. She
said they usually check every 6 hours, unless there is some obvious change. At this point, my friend Lisa had arrived.

At 8:15, I decided to get out of the tub as the contractions were really hard and there was only a brief break between them. I
thought that if I could lay down a little while, it would give me a little more of a break between them. I was thinking I still had
several hours to go and was really in need of a break. I had several contractions between the bathtub and the bed. Unbeknownst to me, Tony decided he should go get Martina as he could tell my demeanor was changing. Lisa helped me to the bed and asked what she could do to help. I asked her to pray for me. She laid her hands on my head and prayed aloud for the Lord's protection and comfort. It was really beautiful and helped me to keep my focus where it belonged.

Martina came during Lisa's prayer, and after the prayer she checked me I was completely dialated. She told me later that she
was not expecting me to be so far along--was she surprised! I told her the contractions were not ending. They seemed to peek and
head downward and then to start right back up. I told Lisa to sing Great is Thy Faithfulness for me. I can't tell you what a surreal
feeling this was for me. I had my eyes closed. I was totally unaware of anything that was happening except for my body giving birth and this beautiful song just washing over me. Tony went to get the children --they stayed in the corner of the room by my head.
Martina said for me to just follow what my body was doing and push if I wanted to. I never felt an overwhelming urge to push, but I
realized that my body was pushing so I went along with it. I pushed twice and his head was born. Martina asked me to breathe through a few contractions so she could suction him. Then my body contracted and his body was born. It was so beautiful.  There are no words to adequately describe this experience. I was able to hold my beautiful, perfect little son as he took his first breaths.... My bright hope'...

He weighed 7 pounds and 10 ounces and was 19 inches long. He is our smallest little one! He has strawberry blonde hair, blue eyes
and is nursing like a champ! His biggest sister, Molly, cut his umbilical cord--what a gal!

I want to thank those of you who were praying for us.

Great is HIS Faithfulness!!

Elijah Jack is named for my Daddy. His name is Jack. We wanted to honor Daddy by naming a little one for him. It's pretty neat that Elijah is our only red-haired boy and my brother, also named Jack, has red hair too!

Dana Lewis
 22 Dec 2003

Isaac Jonathan
The stats...

Born:  December 22, 2003
Time:  2:45 am
Weight:  8 lb 12 oz
Length:  20 1/4 in

Delivered by Daddy and Aunt Jaynie

If it weren't for the Lord and "the MOMYS"...*

I may have never met the woman who very possibly saved my baby's life.

I'm not sure how to be brief with this story, but I will try .  Two years ago our family attended the MOMYS Retreat in Texas. While there, our family became friends with another MOMYS family, the S family.  Almost from the very beginning, there was a really neat bond between our families.  We spent a good part of the week doing different activities together.  After the retreat we kept in touch via email and telephone calls.   Our families visited each other a few times and the bond just continued to strengthen.  Jaynie is such an incredibly dear friend to me!  Our family was privileged to be able to be a part of the miracles surrounding the life and homegoing of their precious little one, Jonathan.  His life changed me in so many ways--I am forever grateful to the Lord that I had a chance to know him.  The Lord has just continued to strengthen the bond between our families.  Jaynie is so much more than just a friend, she's a true sister in every sense of the word.  I thank the Lord so much for her.

Several months ago Jaynie told me that she and Tim had decided that when the time came for our baby to be born that she wanted to come and be here for us.  What an incredible blessing!  Our children love their "Aunt Jaynie" and I knew we would all be in good hands!  So, when I was about to hit that 42 week mark, Jaynie bundled up their blessings and headed to Mississippi from Texas to be here for us.  I could go on and on about how much she and her children did for us--they are all so neat!

After I passed the *magic* 42 week mark, Jaynie was such a support for me.  When I would get weak, scared, frustrated and overwhelmed, she would just hug me and reassure me that everything was okay.  She would say "God knows the time for this baby to be born.  He knows how this will all play out.  Have faith!"  Her support was just so needed--she helped keep me stable when I wavered.

Okay, now for the best part of the story!

Sunday night I began having a few contractions.  One at 5:00, one at 6:00, etc...  until about midnight.  They were about every 7-10 minutes but I wasn't sure if it was *real* labor or not.  (Several days before this I had had six hours of false labor and I think I was just gun-shy.)  We decided to all just go to bed and if it wasn't real labor it would stop.  Well, they didn't stop.  They kept getting closer and stronger so a little after 1:00 I got up to go to the couch and change positions.  I woke Jaynie up and asked her to
come to the living room with me.  Tony was already up and doing something upstairs (realized later he was getting the bed ready for the birth).  The contractions were coming stronger and faster and longer and there was only 2 or 3 minutes between them.  Tony, Jaynie and I decided to go ahead and call the midwives so they could be on their way.  Well, the contractions kept on stronger and faster and it was soon obvious that the midwives weren't going to make it.  Jaynie and Tony were so calm.  I was pretty calm.
 The whole thing was just kinda surreal.  Anyway, back to the story...Jaynie checked me and I was dilated to 4 around 1:30.  I couldn't believe that labor was so hard and I was only 4!  Jaynie was so calm.  She said "It's okay.  It's supposed to be like this."  She was so reassuring.  I guess it was around 2:35 or so that we made it up to our bedroom.  She checked and I was fully dilated and the water was bulging.  She told me to push and the waters broke.   She then told me to begin pushing.  I remember thinking
'It's not time to push' but I did as she said.  It never occurred to me to question her.  I think I pushed through four contractions and our son was born!  Tony and Jaynie dried him off quickly, Jaynie suctioned him and laid him on my chest.  It was just the most calm, peaceful feeling.  No one was panicked, it just seemed like the most natural thing.  I was still in shock that I had delivered a baby so quickly though--that took a while to wear off!  I still can't believe how calm my sweet husband was during all of this.  He was the most able assistant and he and Jaynie made such a great team!

Now, why did I say at the beginning that she most probably saved my baby's life?  Well, she told me after all was done that when his head crowned she saw something across the top of his head.  She couldn't tell if it was the cord over his head or if there was a deformity on his head but she knew that he had to be born *now*.  That's why she instructed me to push when she did.  Turns out it was a varicosity--so no big deal, but listen to the rest of this story...

When our son was born, Jaynie noticed almost immediately that his cord was not pulsating.  It had evidently separated sometime during the labor.   Our son was born with a blue/purple face but revived quickly.  Because Jaynie didn't recognize what the varicosity was, she had me push him out very quickly.  There's a very good chance that had my midwives been here they would have recognized the varicosity, not been alarmed by it, and encouraged a slow, gentle delivery.  If the placenta had already detached
and we had had a 'slow, gentle delivery' then our baby could have been deprived of oxygen for too long.  The ifs are just over whelming to me--I have *no* doubt that the Lord used Jaynie in an incredible way!  I get all teary every time I think about it.  Wow--that you Lord and thank you Jaynie for being such a willing vessel!!

Our seventh child and fifth son, Isaac Jonathan Lewis, first welcomed into this world--most appropriately--by his "Aunt Jaynie"!!!  He weighed in at 8 pounds and 12 ounces and is 20 ¼ inches long.  His head was 37 cm--a big fella!

Thank you Lord!
Thank you Jaynie!
Thank you Tina!
Thank you my dear husband, Tony!!

I am overwhelmed with thankfulness to all of you!

(Our midwives arrived about thirty minutes after Isaac was born so they got to do all the clean up!!    I am grateful they arrived when they did though as they were able to do his assessment and everything.  They were very calm and said they knew it was supposed to happen the way it did--they felt really peaceful knowing Jaynie was here and they were confident that everything would be okay!)


Jaynie's Story...

Funny but I feel like Dana's birth story is just as much mine as hers! So I thought I would write and tell Isaac's birth story from my vantage point! After all, I had the better view!!  LOL

But, before the actual birth story let me back up and preface it by saying that really this is much more than just another MOMYS birth story, but, rather this is a love story of sorts. A story of two MOMYS (and their families) and their love in Christ for each other.   As Dana said our families met at a MOMYS retreat and the resulting relationship blossomed from there. We just "clicked", if you know what I mean.

Our families visited each other a couple of times. Dana and I exchanged countless emails. The bond deepened. When I went into preterm labor back in July, her wonderful husband took off work, and they loaded up and came to be with my children while I was in the hospital. I had planned another homebirth, but, this was most definitely not what the Lord had planned for me. I ended up in the hospital with a c-section. We soon found out that our little baby, Jonathan Enoch, was not ours to keep. The Lord impressed upon Dana that something was going to be wrong with my baby (weeks before), and that our relationship up until that time had been nurtured for this moment of my need. Dana was pregnant at this time, and I tried so hard to spare her all of the realities of life with a dying baby- but, it couldn't be done. Dana was determined to see Jonathan and love him. I kept her from seeing him right
after his birth, however, she returned a few weeks later (a week and a half before his departure) and was *determined* that she was going to hold and love this fragile little life. I will never forget walking into my living room and seeing her holding little Jonathan (oxygen mask and all) and just beaming with joy. God had prepared her for this moment, and she had complete peace about it all. This was an incredible gift to me. She was one of the very few people who actually wanted to hear me talk on endlessly about what I was going through.

When Jonathan went to be with the Lord, her husband (Tony) presented his graveside message.

A few weeks later we were talking about her impending birth. She was planning a homebirth and had midwives lined up, but, didn't have anyone there for the children if needed. The friend who had been there for her previous homebirth was unavailable.   I felt the Lord was leading me to be there for her, so I approached my husband with the possibility. She lives 9+ hours from us, so this was not a small decision. He agreed.

Well, Dana's due date approached and quite honestly I got a bit scared. After having so recently lost my own baby I was worried about how I would handle it all. What would I do if I got there and just started crying?? My dh prayed for me, as well as another friend. So the children and I went on stand by. Her due date passed and I started carrying the cell phone everywhere I went  :-) Finally at almost 2 weeks post due date we decided for the children and I to head out for Mississippi.

Whew! I have never been on the dad's end of pregnancy- you know the waiting and watching end!  LOL Let me tell you that it is tough! But, it was fun! I got to know each of her children as individuals. Dana and I got to spend hours just sitting on the sofa together talking MOMYS talk! Very fun!

Well, finally at 17 days post due date Dana woke me up at 1:10 am. She was in quite a bit of pain, and declared that if she were in the hospital that she would be demanding an epidural. Uh-oh! We just went to bed at 12:40 am and she had not been in much discomfort. Things were moving quickly. We had stayed up watching a movie and had left the kitchen in a bit of a mess, so I went to clean up- but, she needed me to just sit and offer comfort instead- so I let the kitchen go. A little later, at maybe around 2:30am she wanted me to check her. She was 9 cm. Oh my! We were in the living room and she wanted to go to the bedroom- so we started the journey to her room. We stopped by the bathroom and Dana asked Tony to pray for her. He prayed for safety for Dana and the baby. I stood in the doorway and offered up my own prayer to the Lord. I prayed for wisdom, because it was looking like the midwives were not going to make it. That peace that passeth all understanding settled over me. We made it to the bedroom where Tony had gotten the bed all ready for the birth. Tony and I dug through the birthing supplies getting together what we thought we would need. Dana asked Tony how far away the midwives were. Tony (not wanting to alarm Dana) said something
nondefinitive. He then mouthed to me "they're a long way away."

Dana then proclaimed that she was getting a break from the contractions. The contractions had stopped. Uh oh, I knew what that meant. It was time. I checked her again and her bag of water was bulging. Her dilation was complete- there was no cervix left. She commented on feeling sooo much pressure. So I told her that if she were to bare down just a tad that her water would break. It did...all over me!  LOL

I checked her again, there was Isaac's sweet little head. Full of hair. Everything felt right. Tony and I continued making sure that we had the towels and such ready. I checked Dana again and this time something was different, there was this *thing* across the baby's head. My first thought was that it must have been a prolapsed cord. What else could it have been, I thought to myself. So, the wisdom that I asked for from the Lord kicked in. I told Dana that I wanted her to push a little. She pushed and this thing stayed over the baby's head. With the next contraction I told her that I wanted her to push really hard again. Now Tony and I could see the baby's head- we both saw this reddish tubular thing across the baby's head. It didn't look like the cord- I knew that would be white. I couldn't imagine what in the world it could be. But, it was not supposed to be there! A couple more pushes and out came little Isaac. The tubular thing on his head slipped off as his head emerged. His head was perfect! He cried a little. His head was purple and blue. I suctioned him, then Tony and I messaged him and laid him on Dana's tummy. He was quickly a nice pink color!

At this point I checked the cord, and saw that it wasn't pulsating. Hmmmm. I thought that I must be wrong. Cords pulsate. I checked it several times. Thinking I must be missing something (my view of births had always been from the other end, ya' know!  :o) Dana commented that she felt a "pulsating sensation inside"- I thought (and said) it must be the cord. Now, I was thinking to myself that if Dana could feel the cord pulsating that I should be able to feel it as well! I took off my gloves and carefully held the
cord in my hands trying to detect a pulsation. There just wasn't one.

In spite of the weird thing on the baby's head, it really was such a peaceful birth. All 12 children were sleeping and it was so quiet. Dana was soooo calm. Tony and I were completely calm and peaceful as well. I felt no fear about the *thing* on the baby's head- just knew we had to get him out.

Twenty five minutes after Isaac immerged into the world, the midwives came. The weird tubular thing that I had been concerned about was a varicosity on Dana. The midwives studied it at great length, at first unsure what it was. The midwives were able to just pop it right back into place. They then put an icepack on it. It was the varicosity that Dana had felt pulsating.

I prayed many, many times for Dana's birth. I prayed that she would have the birth that I had so wanted a few months prior for myself. God answered that prayer in such an unseen way- it was a wonderful birth that two MOMYS got to share.

Tony and Dana named their baby Isaac Jonathan. *Jonathan* after my own little Jonathan who is now resting not in my arms, but, in those of the Lord.

I love you Dana! Thank you for letting me share in Isaac's blessed birth! I will forever hold the memory near to my heart.

And thank you dear friend Tina for your ministry to all of us through MOMYS. None of this would have happened without your sacrifice of time in moderating this precious list, and organizing your *retreats*.

To God Be the Glory!
wife to Tim
Mama to Lauren, Rebecca, Erik, Emily, Amber, Daniel & Jonathan Enoch
(safely resting in the arms of Jesus)

 Joseph Timothy

8 Jul 2006

When I think of Joseph’s birth I think of it in three parts…
Part One:
   Beginning several weeks before my estimated due date (of June 24), I began having pre-labor episodes.  I would have contractions for long periodsof time, from four to eight hours, but they never strengthened and they would go away if I changed positions.  I knew they weren’t “real” labor, but I did feel like they were doing ‘something’ to help prepare my body for labor.  I had these with Isaac’s birth also so they didn’t surprise me and I actually welcomed them because I felt they were helpful.
Part Two:
   I passed my edd of June 24 (as expected since I tend to carry a full 42 weeks) and was cruising into the weekend that I would hit the magic 42 week mark.  Alice (my midwife) had informed me that if I didn’t have the baby before Monday (July 10) then I would have to report to the hospital for an induction.
   Our prayer during this entire pregnancy had been that the baby would be born in the Lord’s perfect time, we prayed that nothing man would do would interfere with His perfect will.  We had a lot to pray about when deciding what ‘natural induction’ methods we felt were okay and which were ‘playing God’.  He led us to the belief that using castor oil to try and trigger labor would be acceptable.  We didn’t feel comfortable with some of the herbs that are often used or with more extreme measures (like rupturing of the membranes).
   So, part two really began on Saturday morning (July 8) when we began a castor oil induction attempt.  I took three doses an hour apart from 10:30-12:30 and began having contractions at 1:41. For most of the afternoon, these contractions were every three minutes, never getting harder and not stopping when I changed positions.  Around 9:00 I talked to Alice, it was her opinion that I was having “prodromal labor”.  After I read about it we decided it made sense.  Prodromal labor is when you have contractions but they do not affect the cervix.  I was still dilated 4.5 as I had been for a week.
     Tony and I talked and decided these contractions weren’t going anywhere and we talked about what to do on Sunday… were we uncomfortable with any other induction attempts… how would Monday work out… when would we leave for the hospital… all that stuff.  Then we decided to go watch a movie with the children.
Part Three:
   After just a few minutes of watching the movie I had a whopper “don’t-touch-me” contraction (8:30).  I looked at Tony with huge eyes and immediately had to close my eyes to consciously relax during the contraction.  Three minutes later another one.  Three minutes later another one. Three minutes later another one.  I decided to call Alice!  It was just incredible how the contractions could go from so mild to so extreme in just one contraction.

   Alice said she would be on her way and she would call Kyndel to head on over (Kyndel is an apprentice and she lives only 15 minutes from our house while Alice was over an hour away…).  Kyndel arrived quickly and just kinda stayed in the background.  Alice arrived at 10:00, she checked me at 10:20 and I was dilated to 7.

   Whoo hoo!  Progress!  Of course I had no doubt I was in labor!  The contractions were very strong and I kept my eyes closedmost of the time in my efforts to relax.
   One of the ladies from Tony’s office had given us a plaque that says “Joseph” ‘God shall add’ and has this verse “Thou wilt keep him in perfect peace, whose mind is stayed on Thee: because he trusteth in Thee.” Isaiah 26:3  The Lord kept this verse in my mind all during the last weeks of the pregnancy.  I knew that there was no way I could labor well without being in His peace.  When I would get anxious about the possibility of a hospital birth, this verse would comfort me.  He brought this verse to mind so many times and it really strengthened me.

   During active labor I said this verse over and over during each contraction.  Each contraction was a prayer to the Lord.  I would repeat the verse and at one point I asked myself “how could I keep my mind stayed on Him?”  I began to focus on Him by singing in my mind the song “I Love You Lord”.  It was a very precious time to me.  At some point during the contractions I just began praising Him and repeating the phrases “You are the Mighty King”, “Jehovah Jireh”, “Almighty God”.  Between the verse, the song and the phrases I could feel His presence so near.  I just want to praise Him for being so ’there’ for me.  I know He alone sustained me.   Praise Him!

   Joseph was a big baby.  I knew he was big but ’big’ in my mind meant 9 or 9 ½ lbs…  he was a really big baby.  His birthing took a lot of focus.  Alice was so great at directing me and I felt total trust in her.  I didn’t know until after his birth that he got stuck a little (officially a “mild dyscotia”) but Alice is very well- practiced in helping to birth stuck babies.  Everything went just perfectly. His entire birth from the beginning of active labor was just like something out of a book.  Everything happened in it’s perfect time, nothing could have been any more ‘right’.
   So at 11:46 I held to my bosom a new blessing from the Lord…a new child to raise for my Father.  I still feel so overwhelmed that He answered all of our prayers concerning Joseph’s birth.  I am so undeserving… He is so good.  Praise Him!
Joseph Timothy Lewis
Born at home on July 8, 2006
Weighing 10 lb 13 oz
Measuring 22 ¾ in long
Abdomen and Head 14 ½ in
Chest 16 in
Joseph Timothy is named for my brother Joseph who passed from the womb straight to the glory of heaven and for the Old Testament Joseph who was so faithfully obedient to the Lord. His middle name, Timothy, is the name of Jonathan's father. The S family is very dear to us and we wanted to honor their family by naming our son for his "Uncle Tim".

Dana Lewis
 Nehemiah Nissley

6 Oct 2008

Nehemiah’s birth story really began several days before his birth.  As is typical for me, I began having prelabor contractions off and on starting on Wednesday.  By Sunday they had changed to prodromal labor and continued until early afternoon.  True labor contractions began around 2:30 pm Sunday .  They started at 20 minutes apart and continued to get closer together, stronger and longer.  My midwives (Layla and Diana) arrived around 9:30 pm.
 At this time the contractions were strong and regular but not really painful.  I felt kind of silly for calling them so soon but Isaac and Joseph’s births were both very quick and I didn’t want them to be on the way when Nehemiah was born.  It felt kind of odd having them here just hanging around… but I’m glad they were here for the birth.
 It seemed like Nehemiah’s birth took a long time.  I think that was because I was prepared for another two or three hour birth (like the previous two).  He also was not in the best position and he kept moving and moving and moving during contractions.  Ouch!  I’ve not had a baby that moved around like that during contractions before.  His movement really, really intensified the contractions.
 He was born at 2:29 am.  I was really glad when labor was over!  J  His actual delivery felt different and I asked Layla about it afterwards.  She said that when he was being born and was about to his eyebrows he began turning his head and was rotating his head and he was being born.  Yeah, that explains it!  No wonder it felt different!
 He’s such a doll and we are enjoying him so much!  He has a serious headfull of hair!  We’ve never had a baby with so much hair!  It’s 1.5 inches long all over his head.  You can see lots of pics on our blog:  www.tonyanddanalewis.blogspot.com
 The Lord answered all of my prayers… I had prayed for a peaceful, uneventful (in the “emergency medical” sense) birth.  Thank you Lord for a safe birth and a gorgeous little one to raise for You!!
And now... his Name Story....
Y’all know we’ve been pondering and pondering the right name for our son. We were down to Daniel, David, Nathan, Nehemiah and Peter. We talked and talked and just couldn’t exactly put our finger on the right name. As those were all men of strong character, we began looking at meanings for the names:
Daniel - God is my judge
David - beloved
Nathan - gift
Nehemiah - comforter
Peter - rock
Nothing was clicking. I liked the meanings of all the names except Nehemiah. “Comforter“. That just seemed odd to me.

One afternoon I was sitting around talking with Caleb, Molly and Sam and one of them asked about names again. We began going through the list discussing the merits of each name when we came to Nehemiah. “Comforter”. It just felt funny to me…

Then I had a flashback… I saw myself sitting at Luke’s bedside (when he was in the hospital after his accident). He was just laying there, looking almost not alive… But from the first moment I got to the hospital, and the entire time we were there, the baby was moving. Moving, moving, moving. He was so incredibly active. His activity level went from normal to *wow* almost instantly. I was sitting there rubbing my belly, talking to the baby, looking at Luke. It was so bittersweet.
Later I was telling Jaynie how odd it was to me that the baby became suddenly so overwhelmingly active while we were in the hospital (and his activity level returned to normal as soon as we left) and she said “I think he was trying to comfort you… “


It just all came in a flash and the children were looking at me wondering where my mind was. I told them the thoughts that I had just had and they all smiled and nodded in agreement that Nehemiah must be his name. It was just such an intense moment and everything clicked. When Tony came in I shared what we had just experienced and he had the same feelings. It was such a confirmation.

Luke’s accident changed all of us. Life will never be exactly the same. God is teaching/has taught us so much from this. It’s very fitting that this child have a name reflective of that time in our lives.

Nehemiah. Yes.
Nehemiah is named for two very dear godly men in our church. They are brothers and each have gone 'above and beyond' to make us feel welcomed and loved since the first time we met. Ivan is our pastor and has been so kind and accepting of our family. He is an incredibly compassionate man and loves those he shepherds with a true and deep love from the Lord.
Lonnie and Alma almost immediately "adopted" our family as their own. They are family to us. Lonnie is always ready with a hug for all and a "swing ride" for the littles. Alma is a strong steady presence and a great influence in my life personally. They are so very, very dear to us! They welcomed us with loving arms from the first time we visited church and have continued to love us and make us feel welcome and at home.
Dana Lewis

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