i have been facing this day with emotions so varied. new and unexpected...
i am so thrilled that my baby boy is turning one. i am so excited to give him his presents, and sing to him, and leave work early to escape for some birthday fun. i expected these emotions.
i am a little weepy. my baby boy has hit a very important mark. today he is one. his baby days are behind him, his toddler days are ahead of him. he will always be my baby boy, but today it feels he is a very big boy. this i also expected.
what i didn't expect... this flood of emotions and memories and feelings of the moment he was born.
a year ago today, a year ago right now, i had just given in and gotten the epidural, knowing that my 27 hours of labor were most likely heading to a c-section. i was finally able to rest, and didn't feel like i needed to be walking circles around the labor and delivery unit halls. we rested, and prayed, and rested and prayed, that God would intervene and that i could have this baby how we dreamed, knowing what the empending hours held. and a couple hours later, i shook and cried as the dr told me i had still not progressed, and it was time to start thinking about getting the baby out. i just nodded my head, unable to form words, and let the tears flow. matthew kissed my head and tried to be strong, but i saw his clenched jaw and the worry in his eyes. just moments later we were being wheeled off to the operating room whispering prayers into the heavens. and just a few moments after that, amongst the waves of tugs and pulls from behind the sheet, our baby boy was born. i could hear him, i could hear the dr's and the nurses and the oohs and aahs. and then they were holding him... in front of me to see. and the tears fell gently down my face, my arms stretched out to either side, unable to touch him or hold him or kiss his little head. he was the most beautiful thing i had ever seen. "hi asher" i heard matthew say, choking back tears, and with all the love in the world. the words coming out of my own mouth i don't remember, i only remember what i felt. relief that he was here, and so much love i felt like i would burst.
i recovered slowly, but i did it with a baby in my arms. my love for him kept me going, it keeps me going still. i never knew how he would change me. i never knew my mind would never be still again, always a flutter with thoughts and hopes and prayers for safety and fun and contentment for that precious little boy. i never knew how hard it would be, how aware of my own selfishness i would become. i never knew how a mother felt, until i became one for myself.
and today, i am thinking and feeling and remembering, that day a year ago. it is replaying in my head over and over, like a home movie on repeat. and i wonder if every year on this day, on august 31st, if i will remember what it felt to hold that baby boy for the first time. i wonder if i will think of the instant love that overflowed out of every creak and crack in my body and my soul. i wonder if, on this day, i will always mourn the time we've lost with him, and rejoice in the times to come.
i know for certain, on this day, that i will always remember how he changed our lives, how he changed me, how my dreams have become true. i will always remember, on august 31st, how blessed i am to be mama to asher max. how happy and whole i am because of him on this and every day.