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By Staff Sgt. Benjamin Crane, Kentucky National Guard Public
FRANKFORT, Ky. – Father’s day is a time to reflect and honor those men in our lives that have meant so much to us and have showed us how to turn a wrench or hammer a nail.
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This year, every celebration is different due to a novel virus that created havoc in our everyday lives.
For one Kentucky father, this Fathers Day brings more to him than challenges of overcoming a pandemic.
Chaplain (MAJ) Eric Honeycutt and his wife, Allison, just celebrated the birth of their first child, Kaiyah Isabella, on June 7th.
Honeycutt currently is serving with the 1st Battalion, 623rd Field Artillery Regiment in Glasgow, and is a full-time State Support Chaplain with Joint Force Headquarters since June 2019.
Getting to this point was not easy for the Honeycutt’s. Over the last five years they have been trying for a child without any success. Something that weighed heavy on the two.
Through the trials, the two used each other for strength and relied on their faith to give them peace about their situation.
“First, I was able to face the struggles with infertility through prayer and supplication,” said Eric. “I believed that God would see my wife and me through even if in the end that meant we would be unable to partake in the blessing of having our own child."
"Secondly, my wife is an amazing woman and she constantly encouraged me through the years. The resolve she demonstrated really had an impact upon me. I am very proud of and grateful for her," he added
After lots of praying, seeking help from a specialist, and Allison having a couple of surgeries, they were very happy when they found out she was pregnant in October of last year.
“When we found out we were pregnant I was extremely excited!" said Eric. "I was also relieved and very nervous at the same time. I wondered many times over if I could be a good father to my child."
Throughout the birth Eric became the stronghold his wife needed. Allison was in labor for more than 18 hours.
“Eric was my number one support, and he spent the whole night literally standing by my side, encouraging me, helping me in every way,” said Allison. “I had to push for more than 5 hours before she came. He listened to my every doubt and fear and desire of giving up, and he was my rock. As Kaiyah was born having her arm up across her face , this slowed down the whole process and we were very exhausted when she was finally born but I am so proud of him for how he stepped up to this first role as a father.”
Getting to hold their little bundle of joy made all the struggles of the past fade away.
“As I first held Kaiyah, I praised the Lord for his gift to us,” exclaimed Allison. “She is a miracle. God has truly blessed us, and I am so thankful for her; She has been fearfully and wonderfully made by Him in every way.”
The newly minted father echoed Allison's feelings.
“My first thoughts were filled with joy and pride,” said
Eric. “I couldn’t believe that after all this waiting we were finally blessed
enough to have and hold our daughter. When I was able to hear Kaiyah’s
heartbeat for the very first time, I was brought to tears. I was so excited
about the fact that we were finally going to have our first child.
“What brought even more excitement is the fact that we didn’t find out the sex until she was born. That definitely added a new dimension to the whole ordeal. I was ready to receive which ever we were blessed enough to receive,” he said.
The timing couldn’t have come any better for Chaplain
Honeycutt with Father’s Day on the way. He can finally be the father he long
desired to be.
“It has been so rewarding watching Eric in his new role as a father," said Allison. "I have gotten to see a new side of him. He is a sweet, loving, caring, timid (when it comes to holding her, changing her diaper or clothes), and he shows a willing eagerness to be a good dad! I'm sure there will be tough days ahead but I see a potential in him that he will rise to the challenge and be a wonderful father.”