This sweet, darling boy is 18 months old today! The saying goes "The days are long, but the years are short." I actually find the days to be screaming by at warp speed, and the months even more so.
When we found out we were having a baby we were overjoyed. We, of course, had the new-parent butterflies and worries, and I'm not ashamed to admit that I had a few of those "What have we done?" moments along the way, worried that life as we knew it was forever over (it is, in a good way) and that we'd become washed up old farts the minute our baby was born. (We probably have, but, hey, we aren't complaining.)
I spent hours and hours daydreaming about our sweet baby, wondering who this tiny person would be, whose nose he/she would have, what personality traits we would pass on to him/her. We went back and forth on whether or not we should find out the sex or wait and be surprised the day of the birth. It was such a tough decision. Part of me was so curious and REALLY tempted to find out so we could register for all the gender-specific stuff, but the more we thought and talked about it we both wanted that big moment at the birth of "It's a _____!!"
I prayed and prayed for a boy. I've always wanted to have a boy first, you know, the big brother, protector of the tribe, right? I thought that if I focused enough on having a boy, it would happen. I convinced myself through and through
Toward the end of my pregnancy I had a sudden moment of panic, realizing I didn't know this child at all. Who was this kid?? I remember telling R "We are going to bring home a complete stranger!" (Now that I think back on it, that's pretty funny.) I was truly frightened by the prospect of this total unknown being, and felt horrendous guilt at the same time. I'm Mom! I have carried this baby for nearly 40 weeks in my body; how do I not know him/her?? I'm a horrible mom already.
And then he was here. R exclaimed "It's a BOY!!!" and I burst into tears. The nurse brought over this purple, wrinkly and very upset baby boy and placed him on my chest. I looked down at his puffy little face, all smushed up and angry. We got this. I don't know you very well yet, but we got this.
Every day since has been a pure blessing. I often look at Ayden in complete awe. We have been blessed with a healthy, happy boy who is growing leaps and bounds, curious about the world around him and fearless in facing it. He is all boy - fall-in-the-dirt, wrestle-on-the-ground, crash-his-trucks-into-each-other BOY.
He's also a total love muffin. When he wakes up he greets me with a wide-open-mouthed grin, wraps his chubby little arms around my neck when I pick him up, and gives me a tight squeeze with his head resting on my shoulder. Throughout the day he loves to stop what he's doing to rush up and bear hug my legs while I'm cooking, or tackle hug from behind while I'm kneeling down picking up his 17 million blocks off the floor, or run full speed at me, arms wide open, when I'm sitting on his playmat. True love.
Ayden's vocabulary and comprehension have soared in recent weeks. Seemingly overnight he began understanding everything he hears (eek! Ha!). He is a little sponge, taking in everything around him. He imitates sounds with surprising accuracy, bats his eyelashes at me after he throws his food on the ground (stinker!), loves to read books, work on his flash cards, and dance like Axl Rose. He likes to supervise as I cook. The other day I gave him a wooden spoon and a saucepan to play with and he walked up to the stove, stood on his tippy toes and reached up with his spoon to "stir". He will point at whatever I'm cooking and say "Mmmmm! Please!" and has recently taken to bringing LaraBars to us to open saying "Please! Please! Please!"
I could write a novel about this boy. Suffice it to say, he's amazing. We are truly blessed. Happy 18 months, sweet boy!! Now, please stop growing up.