Let me start by thanking each of you who have prayed, loved, and left comments for us. We have not gotten all the comments read yet, but we’re working on it. I’ve told this baby that she has many, many people around that world that love her.
Second, she has a name – Abigail Hope Maxwell. Abigail, meaning “father’s joy, women of beauty and discretion” – it brings tears to my eyes as I type this. She has brought and will bring joy to my heart. The “beauty and discretion” part comes from the description of Abigail in 1 Samuel. We chose “Hope” for her middle name as her time in the womb was a time of hope for us, at the beginning as we looked forward to meeting her, and towards the end as we sought to maintain hope for how things would turn out. This child did bring us hope!
We’ve had a girl’s name picked out for some time. I liked it, but when Abigail was born, I didn’t sense a peace about our original name. So, we waited and prayed. I told God that I would use whatever name He directed in. Names are important to God, and I wanted His will in this. At one point a day or two ago, the name “Abigail” came to mind. I thought it was nice, but didn’t think much of it. But, it kept coming back and coming back. I shared with Melanie last night that I wondered if God was directing in this and asked her to think/pray about it. This morning, when I woke up the name was still on my mind and it was like I was thinking of her as Abigail. However, being rather dense, I wanted to be sure it was God’s leading. Scripture says that the heart is evil and wicked, I know mine is from experience. I desired total confidence in knowing that this was God’s leading and not my invention. After reading George Muller’s biography, one thing he would do when he sensed God’s leading was ask for and wait for a definitive sign. A sign that he would see and his heart would confirm was of God. I walked down the hall this morning around 9:00 and prayed that God would confirm His direction in a clear way – a way that even I wouldn’t miss. As I walked over to the NICU I wondered how God would show me, I couldn’t think of a way for Him to do it.
I sat down in Abigail’s room, and opened to where my “Read through the Bible in a Year” plan (minus the 18 or so days I’m behind…) told me to read. I was a chapter or two past the David and Goliath story in 1 Samuel when I started. Within a chapter or two I was reading about David and Abigail, and sitting there looking at Scripture with tears in my eyes. I knew as soon as I started that section it was God’s clear, definitive direction. Melanie confirmed that her heart liked the name and thought we should go with it.
So, all that to say – Abigail Hope.
I share the above paragraphs because it is so encouraging for me to see God leading. He has directed each step of the way, even the c/section birth. It’s not been an easy path, but He has lead, and we are grateful for that.
Abigail decided to stick her foot outside the womb Saturday night which prompted the c/section. Due to the rushed nature of the c/section, and Melanie’s desire to be awake, Melanie had a very, very hard time with it. It was one of the worst experiences of her life. However, she was a trooper, survived and is recovering well.
Abigail is proving to be a very good nurser. We are grateful! I didn’t even know you needed to pray about things like that. However, she is doing a great job with it. The NICU has Melanie feeding her every three hours, so Melanie isn’t getting a huge amount of recovery rest, but that can’t be helped. Again, Melanie is being a trooper and working hard to take care of her baby. We’re pleased that Abigail will have the structure and benefits of the schedule when she gets home.
Abigail needs to show that she can gain weight and not trip any of the alarms for awhile to go home. So far, she has done great. The weight gain should start before too much longer and her health appears to be solid – no alarms so far. No ventilator, no IVs, she’s in a regular crib and out of the incubator! Just a cute little baby girl with a small NG tube (for nutrients if needed) and sweet little face. We’re getting to “parent” her by doing diaper changes and taking temperature.
I think that brings you pretty well up to date. Again, thank you for praying and loving Abigail. We’re thrilled to have her as a part of the family.
Big yawn. “I’m sleepy :-).”