There is a picture way back in the archives of our family photos of me holding you in my arms and just looking at you. Your head is laying right under my chin and we are both so content.
I love this picture.
It speaks so much to what I was feeling on the days after you were born.
I couldn’t get enough of you, still can’t. I always wanted you in my arms. I was in complete awe that you were mine. You were an answer to prayers and it was surreal to me that you were actually there.
I more than loved you, I was in love with you.
I was happiest holding you. When you smiled at me, my heart soared. I got such joy out of just being with you. And watching you sleep in my arms was one of my favorite pass times.
You were my first born, my first baby, you made me a mom.
I look at you today and those first few days that we spent together just you and me in the hospital and it seems like a life time ago.
But in other ways it seems like it was just yesterday that I was there in that hospital room. I had sent you to the nursery for the night as many people suggested I do. They told me to get my rest, there would be many nights in my future where I would have to be awake at 2am with you. “Get sleep while you can,” they said.
I did just that and settled in for a good night’s rest. I was sleeping soundly when suddenly my room filled with light and a very disgruntled baby was shoved into my room.
He will not stop crying,” a voice quickly said as the room went dark. Apparently, you were waking all the other babies in the nursery and the hospital staff was not happy.
I carefully scooted myself to the edge of my bed, enraging my fresh c-section scar, and pulled you into my arms.
I did what I could to make you happy. I offered you my breast but you refused. Sure the doctors called it ‘liquid gold’ and told me you needed it but you arched your back and wailed anger at me. Your 10lb 10oz body needed more. You wanted food. It wasn’t until I gave you a bottle, something with real substance, that you quieted.
I had read in many baby books that breast feeding was best and breast feeding was how we were supposed to bond. But from the moment after you were placed into my arms, after the doctors wedged you out of my belly with a crow bar brought in from the trunk of someone’s car because you just did not want to leave, we were bonded.
Breast or bottle, it didn’t matter… we just needed to be close.
It is still like that today.
I need you and you need me.
There is this unspoken bond between us that is hard to explain.
You look so much like your father and many ways his twin but your personality and sensitivity, that comes from me.
It’s hard wearing your heart on your sleeve. I know. I hope you have an easier time learning to protect your heart than I did but as I watch you, I know you will not. You will probably suffer much of the same heartache I did but just know, I will be there. Together we will pick up the pieces. I will give you the tools to make it not hurt so much.
Hayden, you are 8. I can’t believe that you are 8 years old. The years did really fly by.
There are times that I long for those days you were a baby. There is an ache in my arms that only you can fill.
As a baby you just fit into my arms and even today, as big as you are now, you still fit there… right under my chin, against my neck, your warm breath tickling my ear.
And as much as I miss those days, I am excited to see where life takes you. To watch you grow is a real pleasure of mine.
I can’t wait to see what the future holds. Will your ladies man mentality still hold true or will you switch teams so to speak. Will you take apart computers only to put them back together again like you father did or will you find sports more your cup of tea. I hope you see the beauty of music and take joy in the written word.
But most importantly, just be you.
My point is, where ever this life takes you, I will be there. Each step of the way and as life changes, I will be your constant.
You truly are my heart walking outside of my body. My love for you knows no end. I may not like every choice you make but that will never change my love your for.
So here’s to 8 years together. I hope your classmates like the monster munch we made and you don’t miss me so much for not being there in person on your actual birthday. Guilt is a powerful motivator and I am on the hunt for the best, most awesome ‘mommy was on a blog trip and missed you birthday please don’t hold it against me’ gift I can find.
I love you, Hayden… most than you will ever know.