I cannot believe my baby turns 1 on Saturday! How did a year go by?
As I prepare for his party, I am reflecting on New Year's Eve, 2010. The day our lives changed forever!
Here's the letter I wrote to him to put in his baby book:
The day you were born
The day you were born, my heart grew. It started to follow you around. You, my sweet boy, have my heart. Forever and always. There’s no one else on this Earth (even daddy) who can make my heart sing like you can.
The day you were born was New Year’s Eve, 2010. It was the last day of the decade and momma didn’t expect you for another week or so, but that’s okay. I had a little talk with you and I decided it would be great if you wanted to come on New Year’s Eve. You have been a great listener since you were in the womb. So away we went to the hospital at 2 a.m. that Friday morning, daddy was making mommy nervous driving on the ice a little fast (maybe he thought you would arrive in the car?) but we made it and momma suffered for a while, but all of it was worth it.
The day you were born, the nurses told me to sleep and save up my energy. Momma couldn’t sleep! How could I sleep when my life was about to take on a whole new meaning? I could only listen to a lullaby album and peek at daddy, wondering how he could find a way to doze off. My mind was racing. Would I be able to handle the pain? Would you be a boy or a girl? Would you be healthy? Would I get cranky at daddy? Would I do this right? Could I eat? Was it too early to call my dad and wake him? Would your grandparents get there in the snowstorm? How long would it take for you to arrive? Needless to say, my mind was too busy for sleep. I couldn’t feel you kick because the contractions were so powerful, so it felt a little lonely for a while that morning. I knew you were in there, but missed that connection because of the labor pains. Labor of love? You betcha.
The day you were born, was quiet in the new hospital wing but crazy on the roads. While we waited, things were dim and quiet in the room. Your dad did his best to figure out what I needed. I got a nice break from the pain, so we joked with each other and talked to all our parents as they lamented that the interstates were shut down in South Dakota and Minnesota. Your dad’s parents were in Missouri and planned to come up a week later, so they were looking for lots of updates on the phone. Your grandma Stokes and Godmother Kaylene somehow found a way around the blizzard and were on their way.
The day you were born got a lot more interesting when momma’s pain meds wore off. There was no sense in having more, since it was time to go for it. Mommy had a rough go of it, but daddy and the nurses were so helpful. In just about three hours, all mommy’s pain ended and pure joy radiated through me as I heard your first cry.
The day you were born had so many moments that will forever be in my mind. The first came at 2:31 p.m.: knowing you were finally here. The second: hearing you cry. The third: hearing daddy say with surprise, “it’s a boy!” The fourth: both of us crying as we got a look at the love of our lives. I said, “hi honey. You’re perfect.” Daddy leaned over, with amazement and tears in his eyes, trying his best to get video while still absorbing this life-changing event, and kissed us both. I couldn’t stop looking at your sweet, scrunched up face and your paper-thin fingernails. I couldn’t believe your pudgy little fingers were wrapped around mine with your purple-shaded fingernails already needing a trim. Silly, isn’t it? I can still see it now.
The day you were born, I was so elated after delivery. I was joking with the nurses and making such proud mommy comments as they weighed you and took your little footprints. I couldn’t wait to have you back in my arms, but knew it was time for daddy to hold his first baby… you! He was a natural. I don’t think there’s a better sight in the whole world. Seeing your daddy fall in love with you as he cradled you was possibly the best moment in my life.
The day you were born was a tough one for your grandparents. Why? Because they had to wait a lot. Some were stuck in the snow, while others drove on scary roads because they didn’t want to miss meeting their pride and joy. Grandma Stokes made it to the hospital with your Godmom, just a half hour before you arrived. She says she heard your first cry too, but from the waiting room. She couldn’t wait to come in and hold her first grandchild. The rest of the grandparents were stuck waiting for us to remember to call them with updates. When the wait was over, Grandma Stokes finally got to hold you, but we hadn’t announced your name yet!
The day you were born, we knew your first name was going to be Kanyon if you were a boy. We truly predicted a girl the whole time, so forgive us if we were a bit unprepared when it came to your middle name. We had several in mind, but couldn’t take our eyes off you long enough to decide for sure. That meant your grandparents had to wait longer to know your name! We were just so enthralled with you that we forgot they had no idea what your name was yet! Daddy and I looked at each other and he said, “how about Christopher” (not on the short list of middle names) and I thought it sounded just perfect. We were so excited to tell them your name!
The day you were born, we got to take you to our room, where all of us took a little snooze. That little snooze took us right into the new year. It was already 2011 before any of us knew what happened! We were all tuckered out. That new year didn’t start out as we would have liked, because a nurse realized that you were sick. She was just about to take you for a bath when she noticed you were breathing a little fast. You had been too sleepy to eat, too. She wanted a second opinion from the nurses in the Infant Intensive Care Unit. We watched as she wheeled you down the hall and when she didn’t come back for a long time, your mommy and daddy started to worry.
The day you were born, no one could have predicted my seemingly perfect baby, would be sick. We had to stay in the hospital, with you hooked up to an IV, monitors and oxygen. That lasted 7 days, baby boy. You had an infection and they don’t know how you got it, what it was or why it happened. Your lungs had fluid on them and you needed antibiotics. That was the news I didn’t expect on the day you were born. She told us you would have to go and your mommy broke down in your daddy’s arms.
The day you were born started something I can’t shut off… my need to protect you. The minute I saw my baby hooked up to all those cords, with needles having poked you and you lying in that little special bed, I wanted to just make it all go away. Luckily, sweet boy, you were going to be just fine. It was a rough 7 days for us all, but you started to show your personality: a wonderful child. You hardly complained and were such a sweet baby through it all.
The day you were born, I started enjoying this life even more. We started down a road of wonder, watching you learn new things and snapping pictures and video taping your every cute little move. I cannot wait to have another 365 days of joy with you.
The day you were born, the world gained a ray of sunshine. You have brought so many smiles to so many faces! Mommy’s cheeks hurt sometimes I am smiling so much or laughing so hard with you. Kanyon, you are a miracle who I promise to always love and protect. I want to thank you for showing us the way to experience pure joy and happiness. When you look up at us with those sparkling blue eyes, there is no way to deny the bliss you’ve brought us.
The day you were born, mommy’s heart was humbled. How could I be so lucky? God had blessed us with a wonderful marriage and now a wonderful child. I cannot believe how many moments of pure happiness you’ve brought to our lives. I believe you are a gift to this family and a gift to this world. I know you are here to do great things, my sweet son.
The day you were born, the world got a little brighter.
Happy birthday, my little miracle.
All the love I can hold,