To Finn, Year One

It’s the eve of your due date, and I’ve been pacing anxiously for hours.  At 3 AM I know that after 9 months of waiting, it’s finally time to meet you.  I wake up your dad, and at the speed of light he jumps in the shower, grabs the camera, races to the car, and begins driving towards the hospital excessively fast.  We’re ecstatic and chaotic.  We walk through the hospital parking lot in the middle of a dark cold night, no one around, no sounds or wind- just silence, but inside I’m exploding with excitement.

There year one began.

I didn’t know as I lay there in the hospital that day that this was the beginning of the best.  I was anxious and ready, I was nauseous and miserable, I was convinced at one point I was paralyzed from the epidural.  Nothing could have prepared me for the immediate love I would feel.

I saw you take your very first breath, and in a single instant a new heart grew inside me dedicated solely to loving you.  There year one began.  There life began.

I couldn’t put you down those first months.  I couldn’t stop staring at your every feature.  I almost didn’t even realize I wasn’t sleeping.  There would be a year of that.

I rocked you in the night, as the whole world was sleeping; I cherished with everything in me, the moments that were just you and me.   I tried to remember how little you felt snuggled to my chest.

For one year now, I’ve tried so hard to remember it all.

The days seemed long, but started passing so quickly.

You were smiling, then rolling, then sitting, then crawling, then standing.  All in one year.

One whole year now, I have questioned my every move, so careful to make sure it’s the right one for you.  I’ve been obsessive and over-protective and clingy.

I’ve learned to let you fall sometimes, to let you dig in all the drawers and make all the messes; to let you explore and learn and cry.  Giving you that freedom has taken a year.

You have changed every part of my soul. It didn’t take you even near a year.

You were so tiny with your indented chin, and round little nose, dark blue eyes and dark brown hair.  One year would change you into looking more like a boy than a baby, with your bright blue eyes and light hair, chubby cheeks, and three cute teeth.

I have celebrated every milestone, and watched in awe as you’ve changed and grown.  I didn’t know so much could happen in a year.

For a year now you have sent me to my knees, thanking God for His grace and His gift, begging Him to keep you safe and healthy always.  Every day for a year now, I have prayed these things and more.

Every day for a year now I have known true joy.

Thank you for the best year.

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