Happy Birthday to YOU!!

I absolutely can not believe Jack's had his first birthday.  I literally sat, looking at him this morning, and thinking to myself, when someone asks me how old he is, I will have to tell them he's 1!  Not almost 1, not 11 months...but 1!  Where did the year go.  Seriously. 

I think about the first 3 months of his life...and know I can't remember those due to the prisoner like sleep deprivation and  breastfeeding struggles and just trying to keep the little peanut alive.  I think about months 3-6, where we were formula happy, but not entirely entertaining...and still really tired.  Then things took a turn for the fun-ner in months 6-9, where he started sitting up and could play a little more, started on solid foods and consistently slept....through....the...night!  Praise Jesus!  And then...months 9-12?  Absolute fun.  I'm not kidding.  Serious fun.  Like, the most fun ever.  The crawling began at 9 months...which everyone said in their cheery little snarky-ish voice, "Oh, now the fun really begins!"  And it truly, truly did!  I LOVE watching him move.  I love watching him choose his favorite toys.  I've loved watching him fall in love with Monk...and learn to show his love for Mama and Dada.  I love how excited he gets when he sees Jeff or me.  I love that when we go to pick him up in the nursery at church, when he sees us, he basically starts crying because he realizes how much he's missed us!  I love that he walks over to the window to watch Jeff's car drive away when he goes to work.  I love that he's (finally) learned to clap...and gets so excited about it!  I love that he's a little naughty.  Yes, some days I love it more than others.  :)  I love that he can eat whatever I'm eating, that meals don't have to be so planned.  But one day, Jack, you will have to eat a vegetable...any vegetable will do...seriously...pick one and I'll be happy.  I love that he will eat an entire kiwi in a sitting, that he'll snarf down half of a mango for lunch.  I love that he is frantic for a cheese quesadilla...um, hello!  At least 3/4 of our eating out is at a Mexican food joint...and now he can join in on the love!!  He's even started sampling tortilla chips!  He is totally our son.  He's in love with milk...and I think is as glad we're done with formula as I am.  I love that he knows just what to do to bug Vincent...and how to play with Vincent.  I love seeing him explore the backyard, and seeing how proud he is when he walks a long distance.  I love watching him walk straight for the bedroom for a nap when we ask, "You want to go see Monk?"  And I love that he throws his pacifier in the crib when he gets up for a nap...and I love it when I walk in his room when he's playing by himself for a minute and he's snatched the paci out of his crib for a quick fix.  I am absolutely in love with him. 

It's so crazy to think that one year ago today, we brought him home.  Put him in his lamb swing and were FREAKING OUT with the fact that they actually let us go home to do this on our own.  We were exhausted, overwhelmed, and I'm willing to bet I'd had a few breakdowns already.  I had no idea what it would be like to be a mom.  And as cliche as it sounds, it the freakin hardest and most wonderful thing I've ever done. 

I've learned this week how much Jack can do.  He's not totally reliant on his morning nap anymore...which he showed me when he stayed awake and played for two....hours....in his crib for a few days last week.  He is a trooper and can go visit another church for a Sunday and do absolutely wonderfully in the nursery.  He can explore in the children's museum, even go where he can't see me, and be ok with that.  He can stay up really late for a few days in a row...and be just fine.  I am learning that he's not totally dependant on a schedule anymore.  At least not as much as he used to be.  He is pretty much amazing.

As I've wrestled with Jack growing up, I've just been reminded that he is not mine.  He is a gift that the Lord has given Jeff and me, and it is a privilege and joy to raise this little boy, not just to put up with him, and "do our best" but know that it is such an honor to be able to be his parents.  And realizing what a responsibility that is, not just to make sure he stays alive, but to raise him into a Godly man!  And how hard that is, how intentional we will have to be...and of course how we'll fail...and by God's grace alone, will he end up making it.  Man, we are blessed to be able to walk with him. 

Now, for some birthday pictures!

Jeff gave him this cute lawn mower.  And Jack loves it!

I got him this trike, which is obviously too big now...but not for long!

And what would a first birthday be with out a cake?

I'd say he liked it. 


susan said...

what beautiful sentiments....i think i even got a little teary-eyed! he is precious...i'm lovin' the cake pic!

Ms. Kolstad's Class Blogspot said...

It HAS been a blesssed year.God is SO good. Being a Grammy (and a mom to an incredible mommy and daddy and to see Kat become an adoring aunt) has been all that it is cracked up to be and more. He was so funny when he first stuck his hand in the cupcake frosting -and not sure he liked how it felt... finally put his hand into his mouth,got wide eyed, and loved it so much he just stuffed the whole thing into his mouth in big chunks! He looked like a chipmunk with yellow smears! A really CUTE one! Glad we did not give him one with blue frosting!