On May 24th of 2012, after a heart wrenching pregnancy, we found out that sometime in the last couple of days our son’s heart had stopped beating. I was in labor. They connected me to the monitors but couldn't find his heartbeat. They did an ultrasound to see what was going on. The silence coming from that monitor is the most deafening “sound” I've ever heard! They decided to induce labor and that day at 3:22 pm I gave birth to our Evan Matthew. Saying goodbye to my sweet boy and walking out of that hospital empty handed have been the most difficult things I've ever had to do. If you would like to read the full story you can go here.
This post is not to talk about that day, the reality that we faced next when we were home without a belly and without a baby made me think different about many things. I would hurt when I heard (read) a mom saying how “sad” they were that their baby was growing. I would think “at least your baby IS growing and healthy, you should be thankful for that!” I would cringe when I heard (read) people complaining about their kids being annoying/keeping them up/being brats. I would think “at least your baby CAN be annoying/keep you up/be a brat, I wish mine could!” I sometimes would feel terrible thinking these things but I couldn't help it. I used to think when I got to bring a baby home I would cherish EVERY moment and that they would NEVER annoy me!
Fast forward to June 27th 2013 when we gave birth to our perfectly healthy Ethan Andrew! We brought him home and the parenting on this Earth began. After having him I've had to rethink my position on a few thought I used to have and here is what I've learned:
1. It IS bittersweet to see your baby grow.
Don’t get me wrong I am thankful beyond measure that he is growing healthy but I still get a little sad when he hits a new milestone or grows out of yet another size of clothes/diapers. Now I get that those moms where not complaining they were just genuinely expressing that you want your baby to stay a baby for just a little longer!
2. Having kids CAN be annoying (as worth it and precious as it is).
Especially when they are itty bitty, it’s the middle of the night, you just went through major surgery to bring them to this world and they are crying nonstop for no apparent reason! I may or may not have wished that he would crawl back inside (sorry for the mental picture) so I could get a few hours of peace, quiet, and sleep. Not that I was getting much of the latter towards the end of pregnancy but at least I had the silence.
Life with a baby is hard and you can never fully prepare for it no matter how hard it was to get that baby in your arms. Of course when you know firsthand how fragile life can be you learn not to take it for granted. You learn to enjoy and cherish the moments you get with your kids more than most. However, you never stop being a human. Things are still hard, you still get tired and some days you just wish your precious son had an off switch that you could use to put them to bed early so you didn't have to stay up for another two hours till bath time!
Have you ever experienced something that changed the way you thought you would feel about something else? If you have a baby in Heaven and one or more on Earth do you relate?