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Homebirth Stories > Nehemiah Nissley

6 Oct 2008

Nehemiah’s birth story really began several days before his birth.  As is typical for me, I began having prelabor contractions off and on starting on Wednesday.  By Sunday they had changed to prodromal labor and continued until early afternoon.  True labor contractions began around 2:30 pm Sunday .  They started at 20 minutes apart and continued to get closer together, stronger and longer.  My midwives (Layla and Diana) arrived around 9:30 pm. 

 At this time the contractions were strong and regular but not really painful.  I felt kind of silly for calling them so soon but Isaac and Joseph’s births were both very quick and I didn’t want them to be on the way when Nehemiah was born.  It felt kind of odd having them here just hanging around… but I’m glad they were here for the birth. 

 It seemed like Nehemiah’s birth took a long time.  I think that was because I was prepared for another two or three hour birth (like the previous two).  He also was not in the best position and he kept moving and moving and moving during contractions.  Ouch!  I’ve not had a baby that moved around like that during contractions before.  His movement really, really intensified the contractions. 

 He was born at 2:29 am.  I was really glad when labor was over!  J  His actual delivery felt different and I asked Layla about it afterwards.  She said that when he was being born and was about to his eyebrows he began turning his head and was rotating his head and he was being born.  Yeah, that explains it!  No wonder it felt different!

 He’s such a doll and we are enjoying him so much!  He has a serious headfull of hair!  We’ve never had a baby with so much hair!  It’s 1.5 inches long all over his head.  You can see lots of pics on our blog:  www.tonyanddanalewis.blogspot.com

 The Lord answered all of my prayers… I had prayed for a peaceful, uneventful (in the “emergency medical” sense) birth.  Thank you Lord for a safe birth and a gorgeous little one to raise for You!!

And now... his Name Story....

Y’all know we’ve been pondering and pondering the right name for our son. We were down to Daniel, David, Nathan, Nehemiah and Peter. We talked and talked and just couldn’t exactly put our finger on the right name. As those were all men of strong character, we began looking at meanings for the names:
Daniel - God is my judge
David - beloved
Nathan - gift
Nehemiah - comforter
Peter - rock
Nothing was clicking. I liked the meanings of all the names except Nehemiah. “Comforter“. That just seemed odd to me.

One afternoon I was sitting around talking with Caleb, Molly and Sam and one of them asked about names again. We began going through the list discussing the merits of each name when we came to Nehemiah. “Comforter”. It just felt funny to me…

Then I had a flashback… I saw myself sitting at Luke’s bedside (when he was in the hospital after his accident). He was just laying there, looking almost not alive… But from the first moment I got to the hospital, and the entire time we were there, the baby was moving. Moving, moving, moving. He was so incredibly active. His activity level went from normal to *wow* almost instantly. I was sitting there rubbing my belly, talking to the baby, looking at Luke. It was so bittersweet.
Later I was telling Jaynie how odd it was to me that the baby became suddenly so overwhelmingly active while we were in the hospital (and his activity level returned to normal as soon as we left) and she said “I think he was trying to comfort you… “


It just all came in a flash and the children were looking at me wondering where my mind was. I told them the thoughts that I had just had and they all smiled and nodded in agreement that Nehemiah must be his name. It was just such an intense moment and everything clicked. When Tony came in I shared what we had just experienced and he had the same feelings. It was such a confirmation.

Luke’s accident changed all of us. Life will never be exactly the same. God is teaching/has taught us so much from this. It’s very fitting that this child have a name reflective of that time in our lives.

Nehemiah. Yes.

Nehemiah is named for two very dear godly men in our church. They are brothers and each have gone 'above and beyond' to make us feel welcomed and loved since the first time we met. Ivan is our pastor and has been so kind and accepting of our family. He is an incredibly compassionate man and loves those he shepherds with a true and deep love from the Lord.

Lonnie and Alma almost immediately "adopted" our family as their own. They are family to us. Lonnie is always ready with a hug for all and a "swing ride" for the littles. Alma is a strong steady presence and a great influence in my life personally. They are so very, very dear to us! They welcomed us with loving arms from the first time we visited church and have continued to love us and make us feel welcome and at home.

Dana Lewis