Today is your very first birthday.
It wasn’t supposed to be today though. It was supposed to be Friday, April 13th, but you decided that you were impatient to come out and see the world.
So one year ago today, you ignored the drugs that they were giving me to keep you comfy in my belly for another couple months. You decided that 31 ½ weeks was enough. Either that or you were bored of the healthy diet I’d just started following for my gestational diabetes.
I was pretty calm through most of the labor, even though it had been going on for over 40 hours. I make all my mommy friends mad when I say it truly didn’t hurt much until I finally rounded the corner to pushing you out.
At that point, I was afraid.
I was afraid that there would be pain.
I was afraid that you were too early and your lungs wouldn’t work.
I was afraid I was going to poop on you. But don’t worry, I didn’t.
You arrived into the world at 5:45 am* and you screamed your little head off. At that sound, your grammy, daddy and I all started sobbing. By some miracle, your lungs were fully formed and functional. You had all your fingers and toes (and I’m hoping you still do…), along with a head full of hair.
You were early to the party though and lived in the NICU for three weeks. You needed to stay in your special incubator for most of the day, but for 20 minutes we were allowed to hold you.
We looked forward to those 20 minutes all day long and when we finally got permission to take you out we’d extract you so carefully – trying hard not to tug on any of the monitors or wires connected to your little chest, or foot, or mouth.
Your daddy and I would take turns with you in our arms. Smelling your baby hair. Kissing your tiny little cheeks and nose. Letting you grab our fingers with your eensy weensy little hands.
Oh, and I licked you.
Because I could. You were mine and I couldn’t believe it.
This past year has been a total whirlwind. I know that all parents say that, but now that I lived it I realize that it’s true. Looking at you now, on the cusp of walking and talking, it is so hard to believe that just 12 months ago you were monitored by machines and too tiny to even drink a couple milliliters of milk.
I had no idea what kind of mom I would be, but somehow you’ve brought out this incredibly patient person that I’ve never known before. Both your daddy and I show you love every single day, because we feel so blessed to have you in our lives. For that first month, it was like my heart was torn out when I couldn’t kiss you as often as I would have liked, which is why I probably kiss you too much now.
I hope you feel that love and continue to feel it for every single day of your entire life.
Happy Birthday & I love you,
* Which is funny, because this morning you woke up at exactly 5:45 am, even though you typically wake up around 7:30 am.
For a shortcut to the Story of Jack’s Birth, click here.
6 thoughts on “A Letter to Jack on his First Birthday”
Awww Happy Birthday, Jack. And that last picture, it’s almost as if he’s saying “Yeah mom? Don’t ever lick me again.”
Such an amazing story. Thank goodness Jack arrived safe and sound! I’d say he was just eager to start his life! This made me tear up! Thanks so much for sharing it!
Aww! Beautiful post. Happy birthday to your little Man! And congrats on surviving the first year!
I love everything about this post! Happy Birthday, Jack! (I’m afraid of pain and pooping too. But I fully intend to lick my future baby now. Trendsetter.)
Happy birthday Jack! I love that you licked him. And didn’t poop on him. That’s great stuff right there.