Arrow turns 6! Including his birth story

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March 2011 – Arrow’s first week of life outside the womb – I am 22 years old.¬†

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Arrow Truth Goddard….”you named him what??” Yes Arrow, his name is Arrow!! ūüôā

Our strong Arrow turns 6 today!

Happy Birthday to our precious little man!

Arrow is physically strong yet kind and caring. He’s not afraid to kiss his mum and play babies with his little sisters. He’s as tough as nails and has still never needed to see a doctor. He is¬†our warrior, strong willed and stubborn yet loving and tender. He’s serious and doesn’t always see the funny side,yet we can still make him laugh. We love him dearly and our family wouldn’t be complete without our Arrow.
Let me share with you his story which was posted on my old original blog (The Heart Of Our Home) – here is is again for you in case you missed it.

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I fell pregnant with Arrow when our first bub Francis was around 8 months old. We were VERY excited to be expecting again, and we prayed and prayed for this baby after suffering a miscarriage only 3 months earlier. Right from the start I knew this baby was strong, though. I got through the¬†first¬†trimester with the usual morning sickness. Constant nausea but no vomiting. By 16 weeks I felt fantastic and¬†we began planning a natural birth. I wanted more than anything to birth this baby into the world as naturally as possibly. This was the first birth that we really planned properly. I read many books on natural birthing, and God¬†worked¬†on my heart and helped to overcome my fears. I have ALWAYS had a terrifying fear of giving birth – especially without an epidural. And God gently worked¬†on me and we did it! Would I do a natural birth again? Yes I would. Did it hurt? YES it did. But do I need to be afraid? NO I don’t. God designed women’s bodies to¬†give birth,¬†and I did it!! It was such a massive moment of transformation in my life.
Later in¬†my pregnancy I couldn’t get away from the scripture in Psalm¬†127

Lo, children are an heritage of the LORD: and the fruit of the womb is his reward.   As arrows are in the hand of a mighty man; so are children of the youth.

God gave me a strong revelation about children that I believe is very different from the world’s thinking of children. Our children are VERY important.

From this moment on I decided that I would dedicate my life to raising children for the Lord. With full support from my husband. I decided that nothing would come in the way, no job, no career, no ministry would be more important to me than raising my family in the best way that God shows me.

This is why we named our son Arrow.

He is our Arrow, our weapon of defense against our enemies. He is our reward and gift from God. We are very blessed.

His middle name is¬†‘Truth.’ This stands¬†for the truth of God’s word coming to pass as we birth our Arrow into the world.¬†We dedicated our son completely to the Lord.

We didn’t know if we were having a boy or a girl until after the birth, but during my later stages of pregnancy we had only picked one name – Arrow – I couldn’t even think of any girls names. God knew though, that we were having a son and he placed him in our womb for a special reason.

I was very over due – 2 weeks and 2 days in fact, before I finally gave in to the doctors and came into the hospital to be induced. Everyone thought I was crazy waiting for so long past my due date, but I knew in my heart that my baby needed more time.

 

The doctor broke my waters, and proclaimed that my baby has a head full of hair!! Wow, we were very excited, yet nervous for what was ahead of us.

The contractions came on steady all morning and Luke and I walked around and around the hospital grounds. I had a really strong contraction right in front of the waiting room of the medical clinic. I grabbed Luke by the scruff of his shirt and leaned over him, clamped my eyes shut and breathed deeply. “Okay, we need to go back into our room NOW.” So back inside we went, where we spent the entire length of our labour alone in our hospital room. We hardly saw a midwife and no doctors were in sight. I was doing quite well up until the last couple of hours of labour where I started to lose confidence. I sat on the birthing ball the entire time I was going through transition labour. Luke¬†sat behind me, rubbing my back and praying. I began¬†moaning like a cow, I couldn’t help it –¬†I had to let the noise out, it was the only way I could cope. I was sweating, feeling sick &¬†light-headed. I was fanning myself profusely with my orange pregnancy record book. My body was so exhausted that I almost dropped of to sleep sitting up between contractions. (I had no idea that I was probably fully dilated and ready to push for a while but I just kept sitting there on that ball!)

In agony I proclaimed to Luke that I had had enough and was going to see if the heat of a shower would help with the pain. Luke helped me into the shower. I was still moaning, and I stamped my feet in the water.¬†I felt weird, I can’t explain it, but I had an overwhelming urge that …something…was about to fall out of my body. (I later discovered that that something was indeed a baby!)¬†Luke¬†pressed the button to call the midwife and she comes into the shower cubicle.

Midwife: “What’s the matter?”

Me: “I think it’s coming out!!”

Midwife: “Get out¬†of the shower..”

Me: “Noooo”

Midwife: “You have to hop out now”

Me: “NOOOOO”

Midwife: “The baby is coming out and I’m not ready to catch it while you are standing in the shower, so hop out NOW”

 

Still moaning, but much louder now; I’m helped into a wheel chair and ran into the delivery room.

The midwife wants me to get up on the bed but I feel the baby literally dropping inside of me and I gag and drop to my knees on the floor.

In this moment I completely panicked, I looked in despair at my pale husband and yelped in a quiet voice: “Luke, help me!”

Everything else is pretty¬†much a blur to me. I can remember the midwife telling me that I couldn’t give birth on the floor and she¬†pulled out a birthing stool, which I sat on with Luke behind me.

Arrow shot out of me on that stool with such great force, I didn’t even push. He was living up to his name already.
He was out in – 2-3 minutes.I had a 2nd degree tear!

He was my biggest baby yet: 8lbs, 5oz,

Born 7:34pm on the 21st March 2011.

We were overjoyed. I needed rest, Arrow breastfed well and I showered and we all snuggled up together in our room exhausted, yet deeply satisfied.

 

Arrow bday

6 years old now!

 

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Our first sunflower and our Arrow

We are so glad he is a part of our family!

Blessings, Peta

Why we intentionally decided to have a large family.

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Our 5th baby Willow – I can’t imagine life without her.

Not everyone desires to have a large family. Actually it’s becoming less and less common in this century. And I also realise that some couples desire to have lots of children but, because a whole huge number of reasons, may be unable to.

It’s funny how when you have more than the average number of children (1.2) that people suddenly seem to think that it is their business to ask if the couple uses contraception.

“Haven’t you worked out what causes that yet?” Is one cringe worthy comment I’ve been receiving since I was pregnant with our third child. Most likely because when I was pregnant with our third child I also had a 2-year-old and a 6 month old baby. I try not to let these comments bother me, they are often meant well and often the person saying it just doesn’t really know what to say.

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Our first three babies are now aged 4, 5 and a half and 7.

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Like most couples do, Luke and I talked about how many children we would love to have before we were married. We thought 4, maybe 6. But as the years went on and we dove deep into research about what God’s word says about having children our thoughts and convictions began to change.

Psalm 127 v3-5

Behold, children are a heritage from the Lord,
the fruit of the womb a reward.
Like arrows in the hand of a warrior
are the children of one’s youth.
Blessed is the man
who fills his quiver with them!
He shall not be put to shame
when he speaks with his enemies in the gate.

The Bible is pretty clear that it is important to have children if we can. Children are a blessings and gift and they are our heritage. And the barren womb is something to weep over.

But how can you tell if your quiver is full? This is a pretty huge question.

Is it even Biblical to use contraception? How can we decide who, how many, and when children come into this world? This is why often Christian couples decide to leave their family size and spacing in the hands of our sovereign Lord. And this is what Luke and I decided to do when I was pregnant with our first baby. We soon discovered that I have been blessed with super sonic fertility! *laughs! Even while full-time breastfeeding my little baby boy I was pregnant again 5 months postpartum. Sadly this baby was found on a scan to be a “blighted ovum” and I miscarried at 7 weeks. I was pregnant again within a few months and gave birth to a big beautiful bouncy boy. A baby daughter soon followed 16 months later. I then had 3 children ages almost 3, 16 months and a newborn. We had a busy time caring for these little 3. I’m so thankful that I had a lovely mums group during this time that I went to every Friday morning and these ladies were very encouraging to me and my three little ones.

When my baby girl was around 8 months old I was pregnant again, but yet again had a heart wrenching miscarriage, this time at 12 week along. I had a scan at 8 weeks along and there was a 8 week old baby there on-screen with no heart beat. The doctor offered me another D&C operation to remove the baby but I declined this time and went home and waited an anxiety ridden 4 weeks for the baby to be delivered at home.

Life gets hard and what then? We still trusted God with all our hearts to shape our family the way He sees fit. But we were weary and wearing thin. We prayerfully decided to space our pregnancies with non abortive methods of contraception. I can’t take the pill either as my body has awful side effects from the artificial hormones. I¬† have never felt right about the pill because some forms are abortive, which I am very against. I am entirely pro-life. We have also decided against doing anything to permanently end our fertility.

We kept having babies, just spaced apart a little. We have been blessed with two more full term healthy pregnancies both girls. We feel so incredibly blessed to have our children. My heart keeps increasing with each new child born into our family.

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Pregnant with baby number #4 in 2014  РHolly.

It’s hard to not let fear control whether we have more children or not. For us, one of the fears we have struggled with is having the finances to care for our brood. But this is where we have exercised our faith in our God the provider.

Not long after our 5th baby Willow was born I began thinking about money and I went down that destructive thought pattern of all the “what ifs” and began having a panic about how we were going to pay for schooling and driving lessons and our daughters weddings! Sometimes swirling thoughts can overwhelm me! But instead of entertaining these thoughts for too long I prayed and gave it all over to God – I put my complete trust in him. That same afternoon He led me to read this scripture during my quiet time;

Psalm 37 v 25 – 26

“I have been young and now am old. And in all my years I have never seen the Lord forsake a man who loves him; nor have I seen the children of the Godly go hungry. Instead, the godly are able to be generous with their gifts and loans to others and their children are a blessing.”

As I look at the beautiful children of the couples of the church we are now attending I imagine what it would be like if they had decided to stop having children after they had their second baby. (One family has 5, another 8, one 10 and one couple has 11 children!) There would be no one in the choir, all their smiling faces, eternal souls, witnesses for Christ, wouldn’t be here.

I met the eldest child of the family with 11 children a few days ago. She is now grown, married and has a baby of her own. I asked her what it was like to be the eldest of eleven. She says it was busy and often noisy, but she wouldn’t change it for anything. She adores all her younger siblings.

It’s easy for us to just follow the crowd and do the norm of society but I encourage you to be prayerful and dive into the scriptures today and read and learn more of the blessings of children.

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Blessings, Peta.

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