It was one year ago today that we brought you home from the hospital. We both remember that day like it was just yesterday. For me, it was a day of mixed emotions. I was so happy to be leaving the small room we lived in for 2 short days. But, leaving meant that I would not be returning to Northside again as a new mom. And that's a hard thing to feel...even as I type this. It was a beautiful sunny day, still cold and still white from the snow that had fallen the day you were born. For daddy, coming home meant things were on track. The day you arrived in the world was slightly overshadowed for him by nurses rushing in the room and stopping my contractions because your heart rate kept dropping and they needed to stabilize you quickly. It lasted just a few minutes, but for Daddy, it felt like an eternity...a time where he was helpless to you and me. But, going home was a step in the right direction for him...and it was the "be all" sign that you were a happy, healthy baby boy.
There are so many things we think about when we see you. We think about all of the things we have seen and been a part of this first year. The sleepless nights were over in just a few short weeks. Your bout with RSV scared us, but ended without a hospital stay. Your milestones came and went...smiling, laughing, rolling over, first foods, sitting up, a first tooth, first words, and the list goes on and on. But, more than memories, we think about everything that the future holds for you and how excited we are to be a part of it. From simple day-to-day things like learning to walk and talk...to exciting new adventures like your first day of school and the day you graduate from college, as a Gator, of course. There are so many adventures coming your way. And as excited as we are to be a part of those adventures, there are anxieties that go with them. Worries about whether or not we did enough to help you make the RIGHT decision when it comes to tough choices. Hoping we raised you to be a gentleman...polite and understanding but strong and courageous. As a parent, there is a balance you try to achieve in helping a child become a well-rounded person and we will do all we can to help you become the man you will one day be.
As I close this letter, it is the end of an era. The end of your first year. The end of this blog. But, it is the beginning of so much more. It is the beginning of your life in our family. You have wedged yourself in to out hearts and our souls. And we are so thankful for the happy little person you are. You bring joy and laughter to each day. You make us smile with all your silly faces. And we will always remember you as the precious baby boy who came in to our lives and filled our hearts with love we didn't know was missing. We love you!!!