The first day

Okay, okay this post is long overdue. The first day was technically last month, but as any mother of children starting school will tell you, getting anything done beyond packing lunches, picking out clothes and implementing early bedtimes is pretty much impossible.
David started his new therapy daycare the week before Ella started preschool. I was worried about him since he’s always been at a daycare facility with her and he’s pretty much obsessed with her. He adores her and is mesmerized with her so I knew a separation would be rough. The first day I dropped him off he actually cried for me. I’m going to go out on a limb and say sometimes mothers actually like when their children cry. Hear me out, trust me. I would never want either of my children to cry out in pain or fear, but David’s attachment to me was a big fear of mine when he was in the NICU. I remember crying after I would hang up the phone with the nurses at night. It’s unnatural for a mother to ask a relative stranger for updates on her own child.  I was afraid he would become so attached to the nurses that he would never truly bond with me.  As a therapist, thoughts of RAD and other attachment disorders flew through my head at lightning speed, and I was afraid of what the future held. So when the nurses and therapists at his new daycare told me he was a little sad when I left, it felt good, it felt right & it assuaged any fear I had last year.
Ella, on the other hand has been a different story. My social butterfly, my future class president has had a rough transition. She spent the first two weeks making excuses to make us late. She begged me not to leave, clung desperately to David and I and we left her in tears every day. It has been a battle to adjust for sure. No amount of cute clothes or special treats in her lunch was doing the trick. Finally, a solution! She was sick this week. Weird, right? But her boring day lead to a newfound appreciation for school. She practically ran in the door this morning!
Newness is upon us. They are both adjusting probably quicker than their parents. And the best news? They still adore each other!
Happy Fall!

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The juggle

Every single person who has more than one child tells you they love each of their children equally. They tell you for as much as you love your first child, your heart just gets bigger and makes room for more love when your second arrives and then your third, fourth, etc. But, if pressed, many of these same people will tell you that they secretly have a ‘favorite’. It may be the easiest or happiest child. It may be the child most like yourself or more likely, the child the most polar opposite of yourself. So, understandably, it’s confusing.

When I was pregnant with David, I had these same fears. Could I love two equally? I was so over the top obsessed with Ella and thought everything she did was amazing (and of course had never been done before) that I couldn’t imagine her brother would come close. Ella is an overachiever, a go-getter, pretty much as close to perfect as I could’ve hoped for. Through David’s pre-natal diagnosis and my pre-natal ideas of Down syndrome, there was no contest; Ella was the victor for my affections.

And then, he was born. This sweet, precious, innocent baby came into the world. Early and ‘imperfect’ and not at all the way I planned. And he was so wholly reliant on Jason & I to make the very best decisions for him. And the best way we knew how to do that was to love him. Every single decision was based 10% on medical advice and 90% on insane, overwhelming love. He was David long before we met him. While we struggled and grieved and mourned and plugged along he was David. He was just waiting for us to meet him.

What an awesome God we serve that sees the big picture and knows us better than we could ever hope to know ourselves. He knew our love for D would overwhelm us, shake us to the core & change us forever. How blessed we are to be gifted with such life-altering love!

I don’t have a favorite child. My children each have my heart in their own unique way. But I will forever be grateful for the day my son rocked my world, turned me around and changed me for good.

“Before I formed you in the womb I knew you, before you were born I set you apart;”
Jeremiah 1:5

The confession

Forgive me, blog readers, for I have strayed. It has been 37 days since my last submission.
Apparently, blogging is much easier when your life is in upheaval. Sick babies, an active toddler, trying to build a business, inclement weather & keeping my family in clean clothes is exactly the kind of drama my writing thrives on. June was calm. June was uneventful. There were more pool dates & girls nights than doctors visits & ER trips. There were way more giggles than tears & many more snuggles than needle pricks. Life is beginning to balance out. Thank you Lord!
We are fast approaching big D’s 1st birthday! But before we tackle that milestone, please accept these ridiculously adorable photos as my penance & my promise to blog and blog and blog like I’ve never blogged before.

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The flower

I had to share.  This is the perfect way to sum up our sweet DavidImage

His purposes will ripen fast,

Unfolding every hour;

The bud may have a bitter taste,

But sweet will be the flower.

-William Cowper

Update: the procedure

Thank you all for the prayers! David did great! They’re going to keep him overnight for observation, but he should be home tomorrow by 3:00. They said everything looks “normal”. So far, it looks like a tone & muscle issue, and a “floppy” trachea. They’d like to do a sleep study in the near future but, another surgery doesn’t seem to be on the horizon (for now) He’s is his happy, smiley self and flirting with all the nurses. God is good!

What’s not to love?

I love, love, love that Down syndrome is barely a blip on my radar anymore.  I love that David is snuggly, dear, sweet and cuddly and that’s all that I ever focus on.  ImageImage

Photo credit: Dionna McCarthy Ryan + Dionna Photography http://www.ryan-dionna.com