525,600 Minutes

How do you measure, measure a year?  The song from Rent came to mind as I pondered how to label this post.  It's been 525,600 minutes since my last post.  The break in writing has been deliberate for the most part.  After the scare I had a year ago today at 26w4d into my pregnancy, I feared that it would end badly somehow like my other three pregnancies.  I couldn't bring myself to write any more.  I remained somewhat detached from my pregnancy, never truly believing that we would experience the miracle of giving birth to a child of our own.  The fear and apprehension shaped the remainder of my pregnancy in many ways.  I refused to have a baby shower while I was pregnant for fear that I would end up with a house full of baby items I would have to get rid of.  My family respected my wishes and there was no pomp and circumstance  (although my coworkers threw a surprise shower for me a few weeks before my due date).  We didn't order baby furniture in anticipation of a child or really set up a nursery in advance.  I polled a few of my family members and close friends and asked them to give me a list of items they thought were essential to have immediately after the baby's birth and we purchased only those things that seemed necessary.  We took a 5 week hypnobirthing class, but honestly never made an elaborate birth plan.  The plan was simple - baby out safe and breathing.  If I was able to give birth naturally, great.  If the baby was delivered by c-section, great.  I honestly didn't care.  I just wanted the baby to come out alive and healthy.  I would try to breastfeed and if it worked out, great; but if it didn't, oh well, my husband and I were both formula fed and we turned out okay.  The goal was to bring home a live baby and to keep him or her alive once he or she was here.

Tonight is a much different night than it was a year ago.  Tonight, I feel incredibly fortunate to be writing this from my couch as I watch my nearly 9 month old son as he crawls all over the living room, pulls himself up to stand for a few seconds at time on his own, plays with all of the new toys he got for Christmas and smiles at me.  He was born on March 30 at 39w5d by scheduled c-section weighing 9 pounds even and was approximately 19 inches long (his recorded length at the time of birth was 17 inches, but it was clearly wrong - otherwise he grew 2 inches during his first 24 hours of life!!).  I am so glad we didn't find out his gender until he was born.  Nothing was better than hearing my husband announce, "It's a boy!" as the doctor held him up for us to see for the first time. 

He is beautiful and sweet and everyday I still can't believe this is real.  We had a welcome baby party when he was 6 weeks old instead of the pre-baby shower.  It was a celebration of his birth and we invited family, friends and co-workers who all got to meet our baby in person. He slept in our room until he was 16 weeks old when his crib finally arrived after we got around to ordering it.  We decorated the nursery in a baseball theme and it is now our favorite room in the house.  My paranoia that he will stop breathing for some reason is slowly subsiding as he gets bigger and stronger and with a little reassurance from the Snu.za that is clipped to his diaper every night before we all fall asleep.  So now, a year later, I felt I owed it to myself and to whoever may still occasionally check in with my blog to update my story.  I may add some additional posts after this one to reflect on parenting after infertility and recurrent loss.  For now, I will leave you with the text from a card I received from a dear friend after our son was born because it was the only card that brought tears to my eyes:

Someday he'll be a strong, confident man . . .
but you'll always remember the first time you held him in your arms.
Someday he'll have his own hopes and dreams,
not knowing that once upon a quiet time,
you closed your eyes and dreamed to have him in your life.