My Dear Son,
You never lose the anxiety. You never mature beyond the unprepared. By the grace of God I am now the father of four sons. Four beautiful, handsome and intriguing young men who keep me on my toes, demand my highest effort and command some of my deepest earthly affection and love.
My newest born, Benjamin Isaac Simmons.
Your Mother and I were hard pressed in the choosing of your name. We had several options. Several names by which to call you, this magnificent blessing. It wasn't until my darling Love was in the throes of labor that your name was solidified.
So named from the dear son of Jacob who, prior to his birth and the subsequent death of his mother, would have been named Ben-Oni, "Son of my suffering", as her birth pains came with such a great cost. It was only after his birth that his father stepped in and named him Benjamin, "Son of my right hand". As my Dearest entered the hour of her labor, absent of any medication for the first time, the pain came upon her in such a form as I had never witnessed and against which I stood powerless.
Oh the many ways in which the Lord will humble a man.
So when I saw the pain that seized your Mother and the suffering that only a woman, by the grace of God can withstand, the name was then settled. It all fell into a beautiful place of finality. For you came by way of much suffering, but by the very reality of your birth you hold the place of an honorable son. A son of my right hand. A son of my joy who will grow into one of the finest of men. This is your story.
Shot with the Fujifilm X-T2 & X-T20 w/ XF 23mm F2 R WR / XF 35mm F2 R WR / XF 56mm F1.2 R
Begin at the Beginning
3:30AM CST. Your mother has been awake for 2 hours now with intense contractions and finally wakes me. The count has begun.
The "Calm" Before the Storm
And here is where the fear gripped me. Yes I was powerless. Unable to do much of anything other than hold her hand, cheer her on and aid her breathing. Yet your Mother needed me in another and truly powerful way. She needed me to document this story. She trusted me to juggle between being her Husband and being her Photographer. My single aim was to fulfill her desire. As she was in the midst of fulfilling one belonging to the both of us. And I promise you, my son, hers is a strength to which you will constantly run, from which you will eagerly and wisely draw.
Here the juggling act came to a head! I had to jump from aiding in delivery to facilitating the capture of a decisive moment. My young man, you played no games in entering this world. Yours was a grand entrance as quick as lightning! I beg you now slow down, for I cannot bear your growth to be as quick as your birth.
It is the process we cherish, more than the product.
The Preciousness of the Afterword
Welcome to the world, my son! We have been waiting for you. May the grace of God be multiplied to you in Christ.
With sincerest love,
Soli Deo Gloria!