My Baby Girl

 

Last week my firstborn, Margaret LaDell Millea, came into the world. It was a moment that my wife and I had been preparing and hoping and dreaming for. The pregnancy went well, labor and delivery went well, but when little Margaret was born, it was apparent that all was not well. Though her vitals were good, her skin in many places appeared to be blistered or terribly scarred. The midwife and I rushed her to the ER and she was admitted to the NICU.

Those first few days were scary and hard. My wife and I slept in her hospital room. None of the doctors knew what was going on. We couldn't feed her or even hold her at first. We prayed with tears for help and healing and answers.

That was a week ago. Though still not easy, things are considerably better now than they were then. We have been holding Maggie and feeding her, and we hope to bring her home from the hospital by the end of the week. We’re waiting on genetic tests to confirm, but it looks like my baby girl has an extremely rare and non-life threatening genetic disorder. Along with her skin trouble (which does not appear to cause her pain), she may have some dental issues, and she won’t be able to see much out of one eye (thankfully the other one is perfect). We still don't know much about her condition, but it seems like there's a good chance that she'll be able to lead a mostly normal life.

I am very grateful for all the love and support we’ve received from our friends and family these last few days. Knowing that so many are praying for Margaret has been energizing to my faith, and I have had the assurance that we would be taken care of if we came into need. For that I thank you.

If you’ve been to one of my concerts, you’ve probably heard me say that pain, ultimately, is not our enemy. Sin is our enemy, pain is just a byproduct. Our purpose in life is not simply to avoid pain and maximize pleasure. Our purpose is to become like Jesus in our hearts, and sometimes pain and loss can help us to turn our eyes from lesser pursuits to refocus on that great aim.

My wife and I do not believe that our little Margaret’s troubles are “all part of God’s plan” or that it was “His will” that she be born with this disorder. This didn’t happen because we sinned, nor are we being persecuted because we are so righteous. We reject the idea that God is punishing or testing us. But… We know that God can bring good out of this bad thing. We know that He foresaw this difficulty, allowed it to come to us, and has been planning to lead us, support us, and even bless us through it. Our hearts ache for our little one, and we grieve the loss of some of our hopes and dreams for her, but our hearts are also full of love, and we trust that He who is love will keep walking with us along this sometimes bumpy road.

Thank you again for your prayers and support.

Peace be with you,

John