Michael's Initial Thoughts:
To say that I am excited would be huge understatement. I understand that the thought of me being a dad is a scaring thought to many of you and quite frankly, it is somewhat scary to myself. The responsibility of a child is something that should not be taken lightly. My first thought, as I visited some of our best friends in the hospital earlier this week to see them and their newborn child was, "How could anyone conceive a child and then give birth to a child and still not believe in a God that created the universe for a distinct purpose." If anything, I find myself more drawn to God in these amazing times than ever.
I want to thank several of my friends and family for playing such a huge role in preparing me for my next role in life. From several of my friends that are fathers, John (father of 2), Jared (enthusiastic father of 1) , Jay (father of two boys), Jordan (father of 1 beautiful girl), Chris (proud father of 7. The man knows all about fatherhood) and most of all Maddox "Maddad" Casey (proud father of 3 beautiful girls). To Uncles, Mike, Eddie (most of the time), Grant, and Gary. To my brother David. To both PaPaw Eady and PaPaw Loosier. To Sarah Beth's late father John David Crow, Jr. And most of all to my own father, Chuck "Wagon" Eady.
I want to especially thank 3 people. Firstly, Maddox for his friendship and impact he has had on preparing me. Being thrown into the father role at very young age, he reacted better than just about anyone and hasn't slowed down sense. (Except for his recent vasectomy) Sacrifice upon sacrifice has been made to better the lives of his family and they have not gone unnoticed. Thanks again buddy for being a role model even when you think you might not be one.
Secondly, John David Crow, Jr. Although I never had the privilege of meeting him, I feel like he speaks to me on a daily basis through his absolutely amazingly beautiful family that he left behind. The endless stories that I have heard from his youngest daughter paint a very true portrait of what it meant to be a father. From his early morning donut runs for the girls (especially for SB) to the protector role he played for the women in his family. While he is no longer with us, I will do my best to paint the picture of his time as a father to this child that God has given us.
Mostly, I want to thank my own father. No one has better shaped my life than my own father. From my long chicken legs that I inherited to the smart ass remarks that you so commonly hear come from my lips. I only hope that I can be the father and mentor that he was to me and still continues to be. The spiritual foundation that he provided me is priceless. Thanks again Wagon!
I consider myself to be blessed beyond belief to have such great examples surrounding me. How many times have I made fun of people like Maddox for their evolvement into fatherhood and all the things that come along with it such as horrible "dad jokes" that no longer seem to be funny? Alas, I have arrived but let's hope that I don't fall too quickly into the role of wearing button down short sleeve dress shirts and telling bad jokes that only I believe to be funny.
Lastly, I ask that each of you lift Sarah Beth, myself, and this beautiful child in your prayers on a daily basis. Without God and our relationships with him, we would not be in the position to be having a child. Thank you for the prayer that we have already been showered with and thanks for all your future prayers!
Ephesians 6:4 "Fathers do not exasperate your children; but instead bring them up in the training and instruction of the Lord."
P.S. If you are curious whether I teared up while writing this, I think you all know the answer. Wouldn't it be interesting to see a little baby girl introduced to this family of all boys...