Saturday, June 11, 2011

A Letter To My Four Year-Old Son

Dear Seth,

Just minutes old-such a wonder-so pensive and quiet
You turned four years old about thirty minutes ago- you came flying into this world (literally) at 12:17am on Monday, June 11th, 2007. Daddy had to catch you, mid-air, as you were taking a nose-dive toward the delivery room floor. Nothing in our lives has been the same since- but we wanted it that way- the YOU part, that is.  We wanted you with every ounce of our beings- all five of us.  From the moment you came into existence, as a line on the five pregnancy tests I took, we were your biggest fans.

Four years ago, right now, I was frightened to my core that you weren't going to make it.  You had been induced a month early, because the sonogram said you were already 9 and 1/2 pounds (technology can be sketchy like that). The high-risk team of obstetricians, who'd been following your development, along with our mid-wife, feared that you might suffer a similar fate to your brother , also a very large baby, whose collar bone had been broken in the birth canal during delivery.  But you were only 7lbs. 8oz- a peanut compared to ol' Benjamin, and you weren't crying or moving at all really.  You just stared.  I kept thinking you might be dead.  There were all of these doctors and neo-natal specialists surrounding you....and nobody was saying anything.  I remember yelling, over and over "what's wrong with him? is my baby going to be okay?  I just want to hold my baby...please let me hold him...please let him be okay!!!"

You shouldn't have been born on June 11th, 2007.  My body knew that,  and fought to hold onto you for two days after the induction first began....You knew you weren't ready either.  Together it felt like we barely made it through that birth- my allergic reaction to the epidural, our blood pressures plummeting....I felt like I was dying at one point.  Maybe you did too...Maybe that is why its been such a harrowing start in your short life, for you and for me.   Maybe that is why it seems like something may have happened there, in that hospital room, with all of those drugs and hormones and stress....for all of those days.

Seth the trash man, Spring 2011
The very funny boy
If you are old enough to read this, I hope that you are happy- living up to all of your potential- doing as you were created to do....maybe you are a trash truck driver or a fire fighter.  Maybe you changed your mind, somewhere along the way, and decided to play hockey (in which case, I hope you are good because we are probably broke), or go to med school, or become a bass player in a rock band.  Perhaps you are a starving artist or a missionary or a teacher.  Whatever brings you joy- that is all I want for you.  Its all up to you, my son.  From the moment I met you, during those first exhausted exchanges, you seemed to have a plan- and you've been following that path ever since...we were always just trying to keep up.

If you are old enough to read this, I hope that you have forgiven me for all of my short-comings- for the days, during your early years, when you could feel my anxiety, as I held you, and it made you scared, or insecure, and for the days that you missed me, when I was trying to get help. I hope that you have forgiven the times when I grew impatient with you while you demanded more of my time and energy than I could possibly give.  I hope that you feel all of my good intentions that I poured into you, every moment of your life...

Seth-finally walking at 19mos.
If you are old enough to read this, I hope that you are not wrestling with a label that tries to define you as inferior or lesser than your peers.  I hope that for all of the ways that you were slower to develop than the experts said you should be, that you have defied the odds and soared with amazing possibility.  I hope that, what were once considered your weaknesses, are now your gifts to the world- your stunning sense of direction and memory; your perseverance through pain and defeat; your stubbornness and passion for the ideas which you hold as your own.  I hope that for every milestone you didn't meet on time, there are two that you've conquered ahead of the class.  I hope that you feel good about where you are and what you have accomplished- I guarantee it is something spectacular- It already seems that way to me.



Thank you for choosing to enter our lives four years ago today.  Thank you for accepting us as your family, with all of our strengths and our flaws. Thank you for adding to our joy and to our glory.  Thank you for bringing a little piece of heaven down to earth and reminding us, everyday, what real faith in God looks like.

Jesus loves you.  THIS I KNOW. And so do we- your lifeblood- your biggest fans.  So do we, Seth.  So do we.

~Mama

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Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, United States
Forty-three year-old, mother and staunch advocate of four young children, passionate warrior of truth and self, finding the soul in each day, sharing my struggles and triumphs as I live them. Mostly I do this for me, so my thoughts don't race as much at night as they used to. But I also give this to those of you who need to know, in any or every way, that you are not alone.

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