Further to my previous post, I’m afraid to say that my blog is still feeling a little under the weather at the moment.  I’ve Googled, I’ve prodded and poked, I’ve FTPed and upgraded, and all to no avail.  So, for now at least, I’ve given up.  One day when I have time I’ll look into it again, but for now I’m going to rely on other ways to update my blog.  My previous post came courtesy of the built-in blog editor in Flock.  This one is being written in ScribeFire, a Firefox plugin.

And it’s high time for an update, I’m sure you’ll agree.  A certain person has been on my case for days, if not weeks, asking for a photo of a smiling baby that I’d promised her.  I had intended on putting it on my blog, but that wasn’t working, so I emailed it to her in the end.  But, for those of you who are not Sarah, a photo of my darling son is in this post – the first I managed to capture of him smiling.

Samuel is doing really well at the moment.  Some of you may remember that the first week or two were really difficult, with him not sleeping well at all, and Ellie and I didn’t get much sleep either.  Thankfully things are almost infinitely better now, far better than I’m sure they’re supposed to be by now.  The last week has been bliss.  Last night, to take an example, Samuel went down at 8pm and slept for 7 hours, woke up (quietly too, I didn’t wake up at all) for an hour’s feed, and then went back to sleep for another 3 hours.  That’s 10 hours of sleep.  At 9 weeks.  Someone pinch me.

Of course, that may all change tonight.  You see, this morning Samuel had the first of his jabs.  We took him down to the surgery in the village, sat in the waiting room for a bit trying to keep him entertained, before finally taking him through to see the nurse for two injections, one in each thigh.  He was happy enough when he went in, curious as always and on the verge of smiling at anyone and anything, and then something sharp and painful happened.  Naturally, he wasn’t impressed.  Ellie and I both tried to be as positive and cheery as possible, not wanting to pass on any hint of worry or stress that the baby could pick up on, but it still wrenched my insides to hear him scream in pain.  The result, so I’m told, is that he’ll probably have sore legs for a couple of days, probably be a bit grumpy, might get a temperature, and might sleep a lot more than usual.  But every baby is different, hence all those ‘might’s and ‘probably’s.

What’s really struck me today is how strong the parental instinct is, and how overwhelming the bond of love is.  I have reasons for loving my wife.  It was a conscious decision.  My love for Samuel is entirely different; it’s beyond reason, completely without logic, and limitless.  And I don’t understand how it got there.  Today I had to take my son, whom I love, to have two painful injections.  And I’m almost sure it hurt me as much as it hurt him.

I see parallels there with God’s love for us, which I thought I might share with you.  Now, some people find it hard to believe that there is a God, and if there is they find it difficult to believe that he loves them, as evidenced by all the pain and suffering and evil in the world.  Let me put it to you this way: I love my son very much, and yes I did have the power and authority to shelter Samuel from the pain of those injections, but I chose not to.  He won’t understand why it happened, and it would be pointless me trying to explain it to him.  And it pained me to watch him go through it, especially because I knew it was coming and he didn’t.  But I could see the bigger picture.  I knew it would all turn out well in the end.  And as much as it hurt (both of us), I still love him.  God does let bad things happen sometimes, and we are without hope of understanding why or how it could work out for the best, and we sometimes feel like blaming God and accusing him of hating us.  But God’s relationship with us is like a father – he cares for you, more than you’ll ever understand, and while he may not want you to hurt, sometimes it’s necessary.

Anyway, back on topic, Samuel has actually been very good today, despite his ordeal.  He hasn’t developed a temperature or any adverse side effects, and apart from being tired and having sore thighs he seems absolutely fine.  What an answer to prayer!  Let’s hope he sleeps well tonight.

Finally, a quick shout out to some uni friends who had a baby a couple of days ago – congratulations to Tim and Beth, and their little Caitlin!  They’ll have more details, I’m sure, so I won’t spoil the surprise, but many warm wishes and blessings to you three!

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