Posted by: amamasblog | January 6, 2008

Four Years Old

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Our sweet baby boy is four years old today!  As I have written previously, that just doesn’t seem possible.  Wasn’t it just a few months ago, that I sat the night before his birth, writing in my pregnancy journal, how much I wanted to meet him, and wondered what he would be like? 

The night before his birth, Joe and I went out for dinner- one last quiet dinner before baby arrived- (we didn’t know his gender).  We sat there, so excited wondering what our baby was going look like, if he was a boy or a girl.  Thinking back, neither one of us really had any idea how much having Ryan would change our lives.  I was having him via scheduled C-section, since he was a breech baby.  I was nervous about the C-section, but was trying not to focus on that. 

Later that night, I couldn’t sleep, even though I knew I should at least try.  I was too excited to sleep, knowing in about 8 hours, I would finally have my baby, whom I waited my entire life for, in my arms.  I wrote one more journal entry to him in the pregnancy diary I was keeping.  I have it packed away now, but I do remember writing how much I loved being pregnant, and what a sweet baby he was already!  I wrote I was so happy I was going to finally meet him, and was looking forward to getting to know him as a little person, instead of just this “concept” inside of me.  I talked to him and told him, I would always do my best to make sure he was loved and happy, and I wanted him to become the person he was supposed to become.  Finally, I thanked him for choosing me to be mama, and Joe to be his daddy.  After that, I went to bed.

We had to be at the hospital by 6am, so were up early, and Joe took one more video shot of me before we left, telling baby we were leaving to go have him.  On the ride to the hospital, about 20 minutes away, we were pretty calm.  I remember it was a very cold morning.  It was -4 when we got to the hospital.  As I walked into the hospital, I knew my life would never be the same- in a few hours, I would have my baby, and when I walked out of the hospital in a few days I would be leaving with my first baby!

The C-section was very rough and hard on me- I’ll save that for another post, but the end result at 8:04 AM, January 6, 2004 was more than I could have ever expected, hoped, or dreamed of.  My sweet firstborn, baby boy arrived safely and healthy.  He was folded in half, with his little bum sticking out of my stomach.  The Dr. got him out, and held him up.  I heard Joe tell me it was a boy, and my heart has never been the same.  I loved Ryan the second I saw him.  The nurses weighed him, and he weighed in at 6 lbs., 15 oz.  Joe brought him to me, and I kissed his sweet face.  I couldn’t believe this baby was all mine. 

Joe went with the nurses and Ryan to have the tests done, while the doctors finished sewing me up.  At 8:20, they were done, and I went into the recovery room, where Ryan had just arrived.  I nursed him right away, and he latched on like a champ.  He nursed the entire time I was in the recovery room, and I am so happy we got this special bonding time.

The next few days were the hardest I think I have ever had.  I was in so much pain from the C-section, and had never been hospitalized for anything before.  It was so hard trying to recover from a major surgery, and trying to be a new, first-time mom, taking care of an infant at the same time.  But we got through them, and came home five days later.  The rest as they say, is history.

Fast forward to today, and I really did not know how many emotions I would have for Ryan over the last four years.  As any parent will tell you, you simply just do not know how much you will love your baby, until you actually have your baby.  I still sit in the glider where I nursed Ryan.  I remember his head fitting in the palm of my hand. I remember his body length, didn’t even cover the length of a Boppy pillow.  I breathed in his scent, and tried to memorize all his details. I loved him so much, I cried.  I never, never, wanted him to change.  I wanted him to be that newborn forever- I never wanted to get out of that glider.  I wanted to sit with him forever, holding him near me, nursing him, being able to coddle him forever.

Now, he sits next to me as a little boy- not a baby.  Now, I love him even more than I did during those first few weeks- I have a son with an amazing personality.  Instead of just loving him because he is a baby, I love him for the person he is too.  I love his smile, his sense of humor, his blue eyes, his empathy.  I love that he can express his love back to me.  I love how he plays, I love that he loves books, trains, planes, and his family.  I love that every day, he is becoming less and less of my baby, and becoming more and more of his own person- the person he was meant to be.

Remembering all of this now, I realize that Ryan has to grow away from me to become the person he is supposed to be- that is what I want for him, and what I promised him I would help him achieve, the night before his birth, four years ago.  As he becomes more and more independent, I know this is where he is supposed to be, and hope that by allowing him to be, he will continue to grow, not as I would like, but as he is supposed to.

Four years ago, I could not have imagined this.  I only had my thoughts and ideas on being a mother.   I learned quickly, motherhood never goes as you think or expect.  I learned never to say never.  But most of all, I have learned how to open my heart and love freely and unconditionally.  There is nothing like having your first baby.  You can never do it again, or go back to that time before you were a parent. 

These last four years with Ryan, have been absolutely amazing, and full of joy.  Ryan will always make me smile or laugh every day- no matter what.  Even though he won’t know how much  I love him, until he has his own children, I know in his mind that he knows how much his dad and I love him.  He has been everything and so much more than we could have imagined or hoped for, when we decided to have a baby.

Happy Birthday, Ryan!  I love you more than you can ever imagine. 

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Responses

  1. oh heather, what a sweet tribute to motherhood and ryan. 🙂 i have tears in my eyes.

    happy birthday to your big boy and happy birthing day to you.

  2. Awww! this brought tears to my eyes too! I can’t believe he’s 4 already!? What a touching tribute, Heather! I’m glad you recorded that huge step from being just you to being a mother. What a step that is!


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