The little guy couldn’t have had worse timing.
First of all the nurse practitioner backing me up was on vacation for an entire week. This limited the amount of help patients would get while I was gone.
Second, we weren’t ready for him yet. He was still breech and we were doing everything we could to spin the baby. My wife stood on her head. We did a variety of exercises from the website spinningbabies.com. We did myofascial massage and chiropracter. We even did a weird acupuncture move involving burning mugwort near the pinky toe.
Finally, we decided on doing an external cephalic version – a maneuver where the obstetrician manually turns the baby. We scheduled it to be done the very day he would be full term at 37 weeks on November 1st. Well guess when the little booger would decide to come?
Thirdly, our doctor, Kevin Schultz, who did a great job walking us through the first 9 months of the pregnancy works one day every 2 weeks in Kellogg 90 miles away. Well, when do you think the baby decided to spontaneously break my wife’s water bag? When my wife came to me and said she couldn’t control her pee, I knew it wasn’t pee.
Fourthly, because he came just 12 hours shy of being a full term baby, he was technically a preemie. This meant that he was subjected to pinpricks on his heel every 3 hours to check blood sugar. He also had to have additional newborn screens. Prior to discharge he had to do a car seat challenge – a test involving hooking electrodes to his body and placing him in his car seat for 2 hours while in the NICU. He was even seen by a developmental specialist and a speech therapist.
That’s right. Our newborn had to be seen by a speech therapist.
It’s Not All Bad Timing
However, some incredible things unfolded on my son’s birthday. My close friend Nathan and I were talking on the phone earlier this year. He had something personal to share. Nathan was going to be Dad. I was dumbfounded. Not only was I happy for him, but my wife was pregnant, too. Our due dates were about 3 weeks apart.
I texted Nathan the morning I found out I was going to have a baby. He texted back immediately. His wife was going into labor, too. In fact, our first-borns came into the world 77 minutes apart.
That’s not the only incredible thing. October 31, 2017 marked the dawn of the Prostestant Reformation 500 years ago. An unknown German monk nailed 95 criticisms on the church door of Wittenberg which would later lay the foundation for religious liberty and liberty of consciousness and ultimately democracy and scientific reasoning. Later, in the mid 20th century, an African American man named Michael King would study the life of Martin Luther. He was so inspired by the life of this man that he would change his name to Martin Luther King Jr. and become one of America’s greatest civil rights leaders.
As I reflected on these events I’ve learned one important lesson. Whatever plans I have for my son, God has better plans.
I don’t know why he had to do a C-section despite all the fasting and prayers and effort. But I do take comfort in the verse Psalm 84:11, “No good thing will he withhold from them that walk uprightly.” Perhaps he was spared from harm that would have occurred. Perhaps, there’s something Melanie and I need to learn. Whatever the case, I don’t know what the future holds, but I know who holds the future. And that future is a good one.
As a result of these events we changed course with our son. We changed his name from Joshua Andrew Roquiz to Joshua Luther Roquiz.
Because whatever plans I have for my son, God has better plans.