Keegan Finnegan

A few days ago, I bid a bittersweet farewell to the Pacific Northwest, hopped back on a plane (my 13th flight in the last six months...but who's counting?) and returned to Nevada.
(^) captured from my window seat on the plane - quite the contrast, aye?
I tried my best to play it cool in the airport, but could hardly contain my excitement.  Most of you already know why, but for the handful of readers who don't follow me on Facebook or Instagram, or aren't otherwise related to me (all three of you):
(^) This is why I was so eager to get off that plane. (the baby, not the double chin)
After months of desperate prayers and extreme anticipation (not to mention blood, sweat, tears, and approximately 129104124 perinatology appointments), I got to hold my newest nephew for the very first time.
Mere seconds after he was placed in my arms, Cadence pressed her cheek against his and proudly introduced me to her baby brother.  It was one of the sweetest moments of my entire life.  
Everything about this tiny infant is as fascinating as it is miraculous.
(^) even his crazy mad-scientist hair
I'm afraid I haven't been much help to his family these past few days.  Prior to Keegan's arrival, I was a bit of a floor-sweeping, dish-washing, laundry-folding fool.  Since his momma was stuck on the couch for months doing everything in her power to try and keep him in, and his dad was busy working like a maniac in order to support his (literally) growing family, I did my best Martha Stewart impression and pretended like I knew how to be a homemaker.  After all, that was why I moved here in the first place.

Or so I thought...
Turns out, (^) this is what I moved here for.
I am in absolute awe of this baby.  And even more so, my heart is completely overwhelmed with praise for my magnificent Savior and Creator God.  What a marvelous creation Keegan is.  How blessed am I to witness and care for this miracle?

You see, the day after my initial arrival here in Nevada, I attended my first of many perinatology appointments with my sister and I heard her doctor say that our goal was 24 weeks.  I don't know how much you know about the average gestational period, but let me tell you - 24 weeks is too early.

Each week, we returned to that same clinic and received another very short term pregnancy goal.  We celebrated when he surpassed his sister's micro-preemie arrival of 26 weeks.  Yet, we still held our breath in anxious anticipation.  There was no telling when or how he might arrive.

I can't even begin to tell you the number of times I rubbed his mother's slowly swelling belly and prayed.  Begged.  Pleaded.  And ultimately, surrendered.  There were more than a few scares.  Moments of desperation, when I had no clue how to comfort or calm my sister.  Should I validate her fears or offer encouragement instead?

Thankfully, deep down, I always knew God loves Keegan far more than his mother, father, sister, or I ever could.  I knew He was masterfully knitting him together in Amanda's womb.  And as each day progressed, I knew it was only by His will that my nephew was still growing stronger and healthier.  I knew Keegan would arrive when God chose for him to arrive. Not a moment sooner.*
And yet, I still can't quite believe that after an incredible 37 weeks and 3 days in utero, he is here!
Lord, please equip me with the skills, love, energy, patience, communication, wisdom, humility, gentleness, and faith I need to care for this sweet baby during my limited remaining days here in Nevada (and wherever life takes me after).
And thank You, God,  for choosing me to be his aunt, because he is just all kinds of precious.

P.S. Ummm newborns are amazing.  Sorry the video quality is sub-par, this was taken with my cellphone.  But seriously how cute are those twitchy little cheeks?
*I do not say this to discount sound medical advice or the extreme and practical precautions Amanda took in order to keep Keegan in as long as possible, nor do I mean to sound flippant in regards to his sister's terrifyingly early birth.  I simply mean that my faith in the Lord supersedes my faith in modern medicine, and I trust in His unique and perfect will for all of His creation.  Psalm 138:8, Psalm 139:13-16,  Acts 17:28, Ephesians 1:4-5, Philippians 1:6