There are some experiences in life that are difficult to put into words, but I’m going to do my best with this one.
My wife and I recently found out that we were expecting our first child and have since discovered that we’ll be having a baby girl. I am over-the-moon excited about it. For some reason, I think I’ve always known that I was going to be a “girl dad” one day. So when we got the news that our child was going to be a girl, I was elated.
It’s funny how some things hit you during the process of finding out that you’re having your first child and some things don’t. I remember exactly where I was and what I was doing when my wife called me and told me about a positive pregnancy test. It was right around Thanksgiving and I think both of us were in disbelief for a while.
As time has gone on and the weeks and months have gone by, it’s started to slowly sink in with me that “Hey dude, you’re going to be a dad.” We’re so blessed to have extremely supportive family members and friends that have made this period of our lives so much fun while we wait on our little girl to get here.
This past Monday we got to experience our 20-week ultrasound with our little girl, which is essentially an anatomy scan that checks to see whether or not things are developing properly with her body. I’ll admit, it can be pretty nerve-racking heading into it.
We got settled in with the ultrasound technician and then, boom……all the sudden, there she was. We could see her head. We could see her spine. We could see all of her little parts coming together. She was moving around in there, almost as if she knew we were watching her and was showing off. It was the most incredible thing I’ve ever seen.
It just so happened that we were reading Psalm 139:13-14 in church the day before this ultrasound took place. As I sat and watched our daughter on the screen twist and turn and saw her heart beating and her hands and feet moving, Psalm 139 was at the forefront of my mind.
“For it was you who created my inward parts; you knit me together in my mother’s womb. I will praise you because I have been remarkably and wondrously made.” – Psalm 139:13-14
I was getting a live picture of what that verse was describing. There she was right in front of me, being knit together by the Lord before my very eyes. I could feel the presence of Jesus in that room in such a palpable way. It almost felt like he was standing right beside my wife and I as we were watching our daughter on the screen.
Between that, the worship music that was on in the room and watching my rockstar of a wife laying there and soaking in our daughter, it was a very emotional experience. I’m not usually someone who is overly emotional but I couldn’t help it. It was just overwhelming. I’ve never felt more in love with my wife than I was in that moment. I’ve never felt more in love with my daughter than I was in that moment. And I’ve never been more thankful for God’s sovereign hand that I was in that moment.
My wife finally asked the ultrasound technician about the worship music and thanked her for having it on in the room. Her response quickly put things even more into perspective.
“It just makes me happy,” she said. “Some days in here can be pretty rough.”
Man, what a sobering reality check for me. My mind and heart couldn’t help but think about parents sitting in that room and getting bad news about their child or having that excitement of an ultrasound turn into an overwhelming since of fear. My heart ached for them.
As the ultrasound went on and we went through the different areas of her body to monitor, the same phrase kept coming from the ultrasound technician: “Looks really good.” Every time that phrase was uttered, my response was always the same: “Thank you, Lord.”
We finally got done with the ultrasound and got a plethora of pictures to take home with us of our little girl. Everything looked good with her according to them and now we continue to pray for her as we wait until early August when we get to meet her.
In the days since the ultrasound, I’ve found myself constantly thinking about our daughter. It’s almost like for the first time, it really hit me squarely in the face that she’s ours and she’s coming very soon. I’ve thought about what she’s going to look like, which is hopefully way more like her mother than it is me. I’ve thought about just…….her. What will she be like? What will she grow up to do? What kind of example am I going to be for her? Am I loving my wife well enough to show her what love is supposed to look like? There have been a million different thoughts rolling through my mind.
But mostly, I’ve thought about God. I’ve thought about the real-life picture I got of his awesome power, knitting my daughter together. I’ve thought about how comforting it is that my wife and I don’t have to parent our child alone: He is with us, always. And I’ve thought about what his love for us truly means. I can’t fathom it. I fell head-over-heels in love with my daughter this past Monday. And to know that he loves each one of us way more than that is just so powerful. And he LOVES his Son and sent him to die in our place when we deserved that punishment because of our sin.
I’ll never truly know the depths of how much the Lord loves us and how deep his sacrifice runs for us in this lifetime. But I know this….I’m so thankful for it. And I want others to experience that love and that life for us as well.
I know that my wife and I won’t be close to perfect as parents. We’re going to make thousands of mistakes and there will be times where we ask ourselves if we have any clue what we’re doing. But I hope our daughter grows up in a house that, while imperfect and flawed, points her to Christ and the abundant life that he calls her to live. If we can do that, I’ll live with everything else.
To my daughter: Your mother and I love you and we can’t wait for you to be here with us. Who knows, maybe you’ll even read this one day. If so, I hope you know how much prayer has covered you and how much you are loved.
Lots of people have asked me since Monday what experiencing that ultrasound was like. I’ve struggled to really come up with the words to adequately describe it. I’m not really even sure that I’ve done it now, but I hope it has at least somewhat put it in perspective.
“My bones were not hidden from you when I was made in secret, when I was formed in the depths of the earth. Your eyes saw me when I was formless; all my days were written in your book and planned before a single one of them began.” – Psalm 139:15-16