Happy birthday to my son

My son had a birthday on Saturday! Here is a letter that I wrote to him.

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To my handsome four year old,

Today is your birthday! Four years ago today, I held my breath until I heard your soft cry on the warming table. Only after you began crying did I remember to ask if you were a boy or girl! You came into this world a bit too early, and yet you met all of your milestones early! You were a scrawny newborn who quickly grew into a 90th percentile weight (and 30th percentile height) fat little baby. Today, you are 75th percentile height and weight, and are a well-proportioned little kid with 6 pack abs and clearly visible calves and quads. Those wrestling sessions with Daddy sure are paying off!

This has been your biggest year yet! You started swimming lessons!! You are the happiest kid in the pool, laughing hysterically the whole time! You also started reading. You can read all of the Bob Books Set 1 fluently and comprehend it all! I am so proud of you. You can sound out words like “peekaboo” and “sinking,” which seems phenomenal to me!

You also became a big brother. Wow. I am seeing your empathetic side flourish as you spend time with your sister. One time when I let someone hold her, you asked, “Where’s our baby girl?” We have caught you on video talking to her and giving her toys, and trying the console her when she starts crying. Being a big brother was a huge adjustment for you, and yet your love for her brings tears to my eyes. Thank you for being so gentle.

Right now, your favorite food is the Super Kingpin quesadilla from Moe’s! Everyone is so surprised when you eat it all! Your favorite color is green (on most days). You have never tasted candy, and you choose carrots or peas for snacks. Your favorite movies are anything Thomas Trains. You love all music, and you have been known to bust out dance moves during church worship. And we don’t even go to *that* kind of church!

I love you so much, and you have taught me more than you could ever know. Patience, gentleness, prayer. My favorite moment of all time was the first time you were being corrected for a tantrum and you stopped crying and asked God to forgive your sins and help you make wise choices. Daddy and I had not taught you that, but it was evident at that moment that God was speaking to your heart.

Your smile melts my heart. I hope you have a happy birthday. I love you more than you could ever imagine.

Mommy

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Family Love

I’ve been posting all serious things recently, so thought I’d take a moment to share my blessings.

This morning, my 6 month old woke up earlier than I desired (especially after nursing almost every hour through the night). When I realized she wasn’t going to go back to sleep, I decided to nurse her lying down like we did when I was healing. She wasn’t hungry, but enjoyed it as much as I did. She nursed for 45 minutes, popping off every minute to smile, with that gummy grin reaching her eyes.

Breastfeeding grounds me. She is close and looking in my eyes; I am meeting more of her needs than one; her tiny body curled into my chest. It grounds her too. Sometimes in the middle of the day, she just needs to connect for a few seconds before she can return to playing.

My son is quite the opposite of calming. He’ll be 4 next Saturday. He is tired of being cooped up and is going bonkers inside. I turned on his music full blast the other day and taught him how to jump on the bed. Then I told him to take the empty boxes to the kitchen so I could break them down. 45 minutes later, he was calm. I’m going to have to save those diaper boxes for him more often!

My marriage seems to have always been an uphill challenge, but we are better than we have ever been. Last night, we drove 45 minutes together to pick up my grandma from the airport. Instead of listening to a March Madness game on the radio (he actually wanted to be home watching but didn’t want me out in city traffic alone on a March Madness Friday), we turned it off and enjoyed each other’s company.

I feel that by the time our kids’ needs are met and my PTSD needs are met (unfortunately this takes a lot out of my family), there is little time for our needs as a couple… Or for him, really. I am blessed by his patience as I battle my symptoms, and am thankful he is at my side.

My life is beautiful.