The moment I found out you would be joining our family, I was over the moon. I’ve waited my whole life for the “perfect time,” and although I feel there’s never a “perfect time” to bring a child into this world, I knew at that moment, the time was right. You are the blessing your entire family had been waiting for. No words could ever express how much you were loved, before you even opened your eyes.
You were so good to me my entire pregnancy. I enjoyed watching you grow every week, and watching my body change to make a healthy and comfortable home for you. It was the only time in life, I was able to take you everywhere with me, and I loved every minute of it. The relationship we built while you were in my womb, is a relationship based on unconditional love, trust and compassion.
Leading up to your arrival, I did not know what to expect. I read several books, but there isn’t a book written that could ever prepare me for the role of your mother. I’m not going to lie, I was nervous as hell. I was taking on the responsibility of another human being. Not just feeding you and helping you to grow big and strong, I was also taking on the responsibility of molding you to be a decent human being. One who will have compassion for others and respect for all humans no matter what color their skin is, or who they choose to love. If I fail at anything else as your mother, I hope to succeed in raising you to be a kind person.
I knew from the time we were in the delivery room, you’d be a force to be reckoned with. Over 24 hours of active labor and 9 1/2 cm dilated, the doctors decided it was time for you to make your entrance, but it had to be done via cesarean. They said you were too long, and wouldn’t be able to turn around to make it through the canal. I must’ve looked frightened, because I remember your father and Gigi telling me “at this point, we have to do what’s best for you and Karter.” About 30 minutes later, I heard your first cry and a sense of calmness came over my body. Even with my entire mid section on an operating table!
We spent an entire five months together at home after you were born, and those were the best five months of my life. Every day was an adventure and a chance to learn something new about you. Not all days were rainbows and shooting stars, some days I seriously wanted to close my eyes and sleep for more than one hour, but of course those were the days where you weren’t having it and wanted to nurse around the clock. I wanted a break, I needed one! But I also knew that you needed me more than anything else and despite how I felt, I had to put your needs before mine. So one day when you have your own children, I want you to remember that parenting a child means putting the needs of them before your own.
It seems like after you hit the six month mark time just started flying by. Every time I looked up, we were celebrating another month! You turned 10 months, and I remember thinking...shit just got real. In no time, you were going to be the big ONE. Party planning was in full effect, and to be honest I was just winging it. That’s another thing I learned as a parent so far. Some times you think you’re just winging it because you don’t know what you’re doing, but when it’s all said and done you’re actually doing a great job. The last seven days leading up to your birthday, I found myself panicking. Everything was set for you party, but the weather reports predicted 100% rain for that day. No way we could have your outdoor party in the rain. But as always, God’s plan prevails and we were able to reschedule your party for the next day without any issues. We had such a great time celebrating your life!
So here I stand with an entire toddler, and each day that passes by makes me more proud to be called mommy (even if you’re still only saying dada). Every experience we’ve had this past year let’s me know that as many lessons I’ll be teaching you over the years, you’ll also be teaching me. In just 365 days, you’ve taught me patience, how to celebrate the small wins and that things will often not go as planned. But as a mother, my super power is being able to quickly adjust to change and still get the job done.
Karter, this has been the absolute best year of my life. I don't know how I got so lucky, but I do not take the blessing that is you for granted. I could never say thank you enough. Thank you for existing.