Thursday, June 6, 2013

Year One

I was walking in our office one day when our VP of Operations asked me to write a guest blog about our boss, since his birthday was coming up.  Sure, I love the guy & love working for him, but how could I summarize my working experience with him in one blog?  Could I express my thoughts on him fully?  Could I remember any funny stories involving him?  And what to leave out?  Sure, this is the guy who kept me up all night every night for months on end, then expected me to clock in the next morning fresh as a daisy.  This is the guy who the VP & I took to lunch over in Grapevine one time & he crapped in my hands.  He's come a long way during our time together.  Oh, don't let the fact that he just turned one year old fool you.  Anyone who visits his office can clearly see he's in charge.
I submit for your review my thoughts on my first year working for Jacob........
How can you fully describe the first year of your first child’s life?  It is such a life-change that it is hard to remember what life was like for us before Jacob was born.  He is easily the best thing that has ever happened to me, he is my greatest joy & biggest challenge, & I don’t say “challenge” in a negative way.  Before he was born, Kate & I heard it all from our parents & other parents about what to expect, but until he was here we couldn’t really appreciate how things would change or what to expect.  And I think it’s that way for all first-time parents.  I can remember vividly going to the hospital the night before he was born to check in & begin the induction.  The meds Kate was on had her hooked up to an IV machine & going to the restroom very often & making sleep a hard thing.  Things moved quickly starting around 6:00 the morning of the 5th, & Kate was pushing before we knew it.  We had to tell some family members to high-tail it to the hospital since things were moving faster than expected.  And then, Jacob was here, and God blessed us with a healthy son.  As my dad had told me before, from that moment on I’d always be a father.  Jacob would always be my son.  Regardless of what would ever happen the rest of my life, those would be sure things.
The first three months of Jacob’s life were like the NCAA tournament for me & Kate: survive & advance.  At the time when he was a tiny, tiny baby hardly sleeping at night, crying often & allowing us very little sleep, it seemed as though he would be our only child.  It was especially difficult for Kate, as she transitioned from a corporate job to a stay-at-home mom with an infant.  With no experience, her nearest resource with knowledge & advice was my mom an hour & a half away.  Some days she felt like she could not go on.  It killed me to see her struggling.  I was also drained most days, going on little sleep & then going to work.  It’s easy for me to recall in my mind the days where Jacob was still a newborn, & he would only sleep in our arms.  I’d hold him until around 2:00 in the morning or so & then Kate would wake up & take over.  Looking back, we could have done things quite differently.  I’d venture that a lot of parents would say that after their first kid.  Those days, however, now seem like a distant place.
Jacob as a 12-month old is even more of a miracle & joy to our life than we could have imagined.  Our son walks now.  He has excellent motor skills with his hands & can feed himself & also drink from a cup with a straw.  He recognizes the dogs & loves flipping through pages in his books.  He brings things to us.  He smiles & laughs (my favorite thing in the world now).  He has teeth in & more coming in.  He sleeps through the night!  He naps!  Our days are more predictable & he has a nice routine.  He is good at riding in the car.  He watches me do yard work.  He hugs us.  He has an adventurous spirit & is curious about everything around him, yet he is mild mannered & polite wherever we go, often content to observe all around him.  He is incredible.  It is incredible to think that he is our son.  I’m so, so excited to see how he grows & learns in the next year ahead, & although most of the time we will be caught up in daily life & we will love our little boy as he grows, I know there will be times in the future when we think back to this first year & wish that for a moment we could go back in time. 
Jacob, I love you with all my heart & I thank God he blessed us with you.

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