Birthday Boy

This is what I wrote on my long-ago blog just after we brought our little boy home six years ago. Happy birthday, Bug!

We made it through our first full night in bed. The near disabling fear of crushing or dropping you has finally begun to dissipate. The first few nights after you came home, my mind raced around like a skittish cat, imagining every terrible way I could lose you. I had to be a sentry, and ached to wrap you in a bubble of pure protection. I was so tense with watchfulness, your grandma had to buy me a sports mouth guard to keep me from grinding my teeth to powder during the night.
Now, I am starting to trust you are here for the long haul. When you wake to nurse, you rest up against my side, opening your eyes wide into the faint glow of the flashlight I keep in the bed and looking all around. I know you cannot see me yet, but I love to watch your deep violet eyes, try to catch their gaze as they trace the shapes of the bedroom. Our bedroom. Yours.

When you are finally satisfied and begin to drift off back into that mysterious place that holds you most of the day and night, I roll you back onto my tummy to sleep. Your face is towards me so I can watch you sleep. Your cheek can pick up the familiar rhythm of me. We both can sleep. All I need to be reassured, even deep in my own restfulness, is the occasional mew and wiggle against my belly. I know you are safe here. You belong here.

Sometime near dawn this morning, you gulped too much air and developed such a hearty case of the hiccups, the bed shook. I remembered you as an inside-baby, when your hics could send little earthquakes through my entire frame. I am still in awe of the you here with me, knowing you are the same you who floated and fluttered inside me all those months. When I run my finger down the string of beads making up your spine, I cannot believe I grew you. Flesh and bone, brain and body. You sprouted from that tiny germinated seed, and grew into you. Our Bug. Our son.


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