My sweet little Nathan turned 5 years old today. And what a year it's been! Since his last birthday he has gotten heavier than Oren and nearly as tall. He was diagnosed with some major cleft muscle problems and had 2 major surgeries within months of each other. He moved into the big kid preschool and graduated knowing all his letters and tries to spell words by how they sound. He gets to go play with the neighborhood boys with Oren. And he can still sleep through the fire alarm!
But I remember so well the day he was born. My water broke early in the morning, but I wasn't sure what was going on so went to my baby shower anyway. By the end I had rather wet britches, embarassingly, and went to the hospital. His head plugged the leak by the time I got there so they sent me home thinking I was crazy. As soon as I got home the leaking started up again but I waited to in until later that evening.
He took his sweet time getting here, and it wasn't until he had been out for several minutes and they didn't tell me anything or bring him to me that we realized something may not be right. We were able to hold him for a few precious seconds before he was rushed to the oxygen mask, just long enough for us to know his name was to be Nathan. Hebrew for "gift from God", fittingly enough. Later that morning he was loaded up in an incubator and an ambulance took my baby to a hospital 30 minutes away. Halfway there, it blew a tire and had to have another ambulance meet it and transfer my sweet angel over. My little boy was so tired that when they got to the hospital, he had nothing left and started crashing. But truly a gift - they were in the parking lot and were able to get him stabilized just in time.
So we didn't get to see him until the next day, when I was released. We didn't realize that there were 2 hospitals in that town, and went to the wrong one. Imagine our panic when we were told there was no NICU there! But they were able to tell us where the big hospital was, and lovely information assistants took us to see our baby, sleeping peacefully in his incubator. His nurse, "Auntie Wendy" had left us a note about how he had done that night, which is safely scrapbooked by his picture with his CPAP hood.
With this begining, and all the problems he's had with various things since his birth, I cherish every birthday. Because he truly is a gift from my Heavenly Father, and one that I am grateful for every day. It gives me a chance to think back and remember the close calls, and the miracles, and the blessings we've been given for him. All the things that seem to come together just when they need to. He hasn't just been a gift to our family, his life has been one big gift from his loving Father in Heaven who truly watches over him and knows his needs.
Happy Birthday, Nathan, and I can't wait to see what other gifts your life brings!