Several of you have mentioned how touched you were by Greg's post on the story behind Nathan's name. I had thought about writing something very similar, but since he beat me (very eloquently, I might add) to the punch, I wanted to share my side.
Nathan is absolutely a gift. He is a gift that we have really come to appreciate in the last week, especially because, due to the flu scare, Greg and I were not allowed to see him during the first few days of his life. Greg got to see him when he was born, but as soon as they realized in the NICU that he was still contagious with the flu, they banned him. I got to see him a little bit later but then late Friday night I started running a fever and I was banned for the next 60 hours or so, until I was totally cleared of any suspicion of having the flu. After spending so much time anticipating and praying for the arrival of our little guy, it was very difficult to know that he was here and yet still not be able to see him or hold him. We had to rely on reports from others to hear that he was doing well, that he was eating, that he was sweet and adorable...all those first moments we had so looked forward to had to wait. Now we are able to empathize in a small way with those parents of preemies and very seriously ill babies who are unable to hold their little ones for months after they are born. As we have since the moment we first knew about Nathan's existence, we continued to trust him to the hands of God and of others while we waited to hold him ourselves. Finally, on Monday we both were cleared to see him and on Tuesday we brought him home. So far, he seems to be doing very well, acting like a normal baby despite his "little heart problem."
As Greg wrote, Nathan means gift, and for as long as we have known what his name would be, we have held it like a promise. But sometimes a gift works two ways. He is God's special gift to us, and we are so thankful for every single moment of his sweet life. Not only that, he is a gift that we have an opportunity to give back to God every day. This child was formed with a unique combination of our DNA (which somehow turned out pretty darn cute, thankfully!) and was given to us to love and cherish and raise, but ultimately, he is not ours. From the beginning, and especially once we discovered his heart block, we gave him, his health, and his future, to God. We continue to do that. We believe that God has a purpose for this child, just as He does for every child. God has already used Nathan in our lives and in many of your lives as well, to teach us faith that overcomes obstacles, peace in the midst of chaos, and the simple, everlasting truth that God is always good. We are thankful for the gift that he is, and we will continue to give him to God every day. We hope that you will join us.