Friday, December 7, 2007
My Miracle. My Gift.
I've always been a sucker for a guy with dimples and laugh lines around his eyes. Those are the features that first attracted me to Coach. Those are the features I still see in him and sigh over. That effect is no less potent coming from my son.
Jock is our firstborn. He is our miracle baby. Neither Coach or myself should have been able to have kids, for various medical reasons. Coach was ok with that, but I had always wanted to be a mom. More than anything. So, when we found out that we were expecting him after a fairly brief time together, you can imagine the mixed emotions. But that's another story that I'll maybe share sometime. Just know that we DID agree it was a blessing and a miracle, to be given something so wonderful.
I loved every minute of being pregnant. (Well, maybe that's just in hindsight. I'm not so sure I actually enjoyed being sick ALL DAY. EVERY DAY. FOR 9 MONTHS STRAIGHT.) I was awed and humbled every time I felt him move under my heart. I loved watching his little feet move across my stomach. I have such a small torso area, and he was such a big baby (over 8 pounds and over 21 inches long!) that I could literally count each toe as his foot made its way across. Kinda freaky, but really cool.
Jock was a perfect baby. He slept through the night after only a couple of weeks. He weaned himself to the bottle one feeding at at time, over the course of a couple of weeks as well. He was sitting up by himself by three months old. He was mobile by five. He was walking by 10. Talking in small phrases by 12, and complete sentences by 18. He was happy all the time, and rarely fussy. He never climbed out of his crib or up on the counters or tables. And his smiles...... oh, they could light up a room.
Those early years were completely for he and I. Coach was somewhere within himself that didn't include Jock and I, and while I know Coach regrets that now, at the time it helped Jock and I to forge a bond that was tighter than it otherwise would have been had I had to share him with anyone. I was his best friend, and he was going to live with me and love me forever. (He actually told me that one day when he was about three.)
When we told Jock that we were expecting another baby, he was so excited! We made sure to include him in everything: he went to all of my doctor visits with me and got to hear the heartbeat; he was at the ultrasound and got to see "his" baby moving; he even got to name the baby! (We only gave him three names to choose from.... we wanted to include him, but we weren't totally insane!) There was only one point while I was pregnant, and he was tired of the whole thing, that he asked if he could change his mind. He didn't want a baby brother, he'd rather have a puppy! After explaining that the apartments we lived in wouldn't allow dogs, but they WOULD allow babies, he was ok with it again.
Three weeks before Bug arrived, we were given yet another example of Jock being a miracle in our lives. We lived on the second floor of the apartment building, and we had windows that sat fairly close to the floors. It was a beautiful spring day, so the windows were open. Jock was almost 5 that year. He bent down to pick up a toy, lost his balance, and fell backwards out of the window. The way he landed should have snapped his neck, and all of the doctors said that he should not have survived the fall. (*This is still so hard to think about I have to keep pausing. Forgive me if it feels a bit disjointed*) Coach fell down the stairs in his haste to get out to him, and by the time he got there, Jock had gotten up and was walking towards him. We did spend a couple of days in the hospital, the three of us--with Coach and I set up on cots in his room--but all of Jock's injuries healed completely in less than a week.
That child has grown into a young man now. He smiles more than any teenager I know. He's still such a joy to have around. He's got an amazing way with small children and animals; I could put him in a closed room with either a dozen wild dogs and cats or a dozen screaming babies and toddlers, leave him alone for ten minutes, and walk back into complete serenity. As with Bug, this boy has so much athletic ability its frightening sometimes. When he sets his mind to it, there is nothing on the field he can't accomplish. I watch him play football, and am awed at his grace; and inspired by his determination and focus on the baseball diamond. This is a young man who has it in him to fully realize any dream he sets, no matter how lofty, simply because he refuses to give up when others around him walk away.
We still have a very close bond, Jock and I. I'm still the one he comes to when he wants to talk about his life and whats on his heart and mind. I'm still the one he comes to when he's got a "hurt" that needs fixing. We try to take at least one day a month, just for us, where we go out to lunch and just go hang out somewhere. No lectures from me. No whining from him. Just.Talking.
His name translates into "God's Gift", and he is most certainly that to me, and more. He is what keeps me going forward. He and his brother are what give my life a purpose, and a reason for doing anything.
I am more thankful for him today than I was yesterday, but not as much as I will be tomorrow. He's my miracle.