Tuesday, March 8, 2016

Lucas turns three

Today is Lucas' third birthday.  I find it most appropriate to share his birth story.  

He was born on a beautiful Thursday morning at 8:05.  When the doctor pulled him out of my belly, he announced, "Your son is born."  His announcement, however, was unnecessary.  Although my entire body was numb to the pain of the surgery, I felt an overwhelming presence at the moment he was brought into this world.  In the seconds before his birth, his soul circled around the operating table in pursuit of the body it would permanently reside in, causing an intense energy to seize the room.  And the moment he was born, his soul collided with his body and the entire room quieted and his being warmed up the cold operating room.  The energy immediately settled and my heart filled with gratitude.  My first son had been born.  And even before his birth was announced, I was already aware that his body was no longer within mine.  The nurses measured and weighed him and his deep cries caused tears to stream down my face.  When David brought him to me, I said, "Hello, Lucas Alexander.  Happy birthday.  I've been waiting to meet you." My voice silenced his cries and we found comfort in the familiarity of each other's voices.

Now, he is my stinky big boy.  He's loving.  He's stubborn.  He loves his Tata (my dad) and his Tío Josh.  He thinks he's a Ninja Turtle.  He likes to eat pizza.  He is the best giggler. His favorite shoes are the pair of Jordan's that Tío Josh bought him.  He's a solid 34 pounds of goodness.  And when I ask if he will be mine forever, he tells me that I belong to his daddy and that he will soon have a girlfriend.

Happy third birthday, my love.  May you continue to quiet rooms and warm up cold spaces.

Sunday, April 26, 2015

Rock-a-bye baby

Tonight, I rocked Nicolas to sleep.

When Emma was born, many people advised me not to rock her.  Their reasoning was simple...if you rock her now, she will get used to it and will need to be rocked every single night.  I listened.  I was a new mom.  I tried to put her down to sleep in her own crib while she was awake, yet very sleepy, but she never slept.   It was frustrating because the one thing I most feared was being that bad mom who couldn't get things right, even something so simple as getting a baby to sleep.  Yet, she didn't like being in her crib.  She cried, so I would pick her up and rock her.  It was the only way I could get her to settle into a deep sleep.  And, it felt right.  I rocked her every single night.  Now, she is five.  She goes to sleep on her own.  I don't get to rock her to sleep anymore.

So, tonight, I rocked Nicolas to sleep.

He gently settled his head against my chest and I felt his body relax as I swayed side to side.  And as I hummed, his eyes began to roll back and his eyelids fluttered until they became so heavy they shut.  His breathing began to steady.  My six month old had fallen asleep in my arms.  I held him tight, closed my eyes and inhaled his sweet, sweet baby scent.

Tonight, I rocked Nicolas to sleep.

I rocked him because I now know that time is fleeting.  I will close my eyes and he will be five, just like Emma.  I know I will not ever look back and think, I shouldn't have wasted my time rocking him.  Instead,  as he sleeps on his own and I stand at his bedside watching him, I will think, I wish I could rock him one last time.  

I rocked him because it still feels right.

I rocked him because I love having him close to me.

I rocked him because he is mine.

I rocked him because I never take the blessing of being a mother for granted.  Tonight, somewhere there is a woman who wishes she had a little one to rock.  Maybe she is struggling with infertility or maybe she just suffered the loss of a miscarriage and her one desire in life is to be holding her baby.  A grateful heart is among the few absolutes in my life.

So, new mommas, if you want to rock your baby, rock away.  And if you don't, then don't.  Follow your heart, it's usually guides you down the correct path.

Sunday, August 24, 2014

Kindergarten

My sweet Emma, you are sound asleep in our bed.  My heart hurts just a little bit and letting you sleep with us is the only way to ease my pain.
Tomorrow is a big day for you and for me.  Another first.  Your first day of Kindergarten and my first time to let you soar.  I've experienced all of my firsts as a mother with you.   Because of you, I experienced unmeasurable joy.  You taught me how to be a mother.  You taught me how to be strong. You taught me how to live in the moment.  Most importantly, you taught the meaning of pure, sweet love.  You see, my heart belonged to you from the first moment I held you and to this day, you still hold on to it.

To me, you are still little.  I can still remember bouncing you on a exercise ball because it was the only way to put you to sleep.  I can remember your steady breath as you slept in between your daddy and me.  I can still remember the moment you crawled, then walked.  I can remember the day you called me mommy and the first time you said, "I love you."  I remember your laugh as we all danced around the living room table on Friday evenings and how you said, "mookie," instead of music.  But even all these memories can't stop time.  It keeps ticking and you keep growing.  And, even though in my mind you are still my sweet baby, in reality you're a big girl.

Now, my soul is distraught as I send you off on your new adventure.  I desperately want to hold you tight, but it's time that I loosen my grip.  I'm conflicted and surrounded with questions.  Did I pour into you enough?  Did I enjoy every moment I could with you?  Did I love you the way you needed to be loved?  Did I equip you for what's to come?
Your daddy has always played music for you.  And when you were about six months, we noticed that you loved one song in particular.  It was a song by Israel Houghton, and the lyrics were taken from a verse in Psalms.  I've known since then that it was a verse that I wanted to pray over you.  Psalm 23:6-"Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me all the days of my life; And I will dwell in the house of the Lord Forever."

My first born, my beautiful child, my radiant sunbeam, you are ready.  You will do great things because goodness will always follow you.

I love you.

Friday, March 7, 2014

Lucas is one

My sweet baby boy is one year old now. 

A few nights before his first birthday, I walked into the bedroom and David was holding him while he was sleeping.  All I could think about was how blessed my life has been by both of them.  I saw David give him soft kisses on his forehead.  All I wanted to do was to take Lucas from him so that I could do the same, but I resisted and I watched instead.  

I've been through this before and I know that it won't be too much longer before our baby wants to go to sleep on his own without being rocked.  I know that he is ending his stage as a baby and making the transition into toddlerhood.  

With Emma, I was often overcome with sadness because time is fleeting and I felt as if I would never remember all the sweet moments that we had together.  Now that she's almost five, I realize that I don't  remember everything she did or said, but I do remember how much of an impact she made on my heart and in our daily lives.  And, that is enough for me.  

I know that life with Lucas has been amazing and I know that he was sent to us to bring a certain, beautiful balance to our family.  And, that is enough for me.  

He is precious.  

He is sweet and loves to gives hugs and kisses.  

He is caring, often checking on his sister when she has been sick or when she is crying.  

He loves his sister, who can always make him laugh.

He laughs when I say the word burp and gets really crazy when anybody actually burps.  

He is laid back.  

He's got 8 big, pearly white teeth that just light up his smile.  

He sometimes enjoys rides in the car.  

He loves to eat.  

He sometimes throws fits.  

He is charming.

I love him with all my heart.

Happy birthday, baby brother.  

Friday, September 20, 2013

tonight

Friday night.

10:00 pm.

My babies are sound asleep.

David must have nodded off with Emma because he put her to sleep and never came out of the room.

I'm all alone in our living room, typing and intermittendly staring at our tall ceilings.

We have tall ceilings.  And a living room.  And a kitchen.  And a back porch.

We bought a house.  A beautiful, new house.  A beautiful, new house that we got to see being built from the foundation to the rooftop.

I am grateful and undeserving of such a house.

Earlier this evening, Emma and David were playing in the backyard and Lucas was sitting in his jumperoo, watching them.

Then, we came inside and gave Lucas a bath in our kitchen sink.

And, this house was filled with laughter and shrieks.

And I had a moment.  One of those moments that I know I will never forget.  One that will be engrained in my memory.

In that moment,  I saw David for who he truly is, my kind husband, who is always willing to help me with our children, even when he is tired.  He has such a gentle heart.  He is such a loving, playful daddy.

In that moment, Emma stood still.  She was helping me give Lucas a bath.  When she noticed that Lucas had splashed water on the floor, she wiped it up with the mop without me prompting her to do so.   She's my little helper.  She is kind.

In that moment, my Lucas brought me sweet joy. After his bath, I kissed the top of his forehead and inhaled his baby smell and all his goodness.

I don't quite know what made the moment so special.  Nothing about it was extraordinary.  We were just carrying out our daily tasks.

Yet, sometimes I feel like God steps in our lives for short moments and slows down time.  And during these moments, we are able to reflect on how awesome He is and take delight in all the blessings that come forth because of Him.  And as undeserving as I feel sometimes, I know that I serve a purpose.  His purpose.  And I am overcome with joy and I am able to see the beauty in my family and in our everyday.

He fills all the voids with life.

I am a lucky gal.





Emma at four

Our family has been in a deep transitioning period.  We have a new family member.  We moved in with my parents while our house is being built.  We both have new jobs.

And in all this change, Emma has adapted well.  She always does.  She is very flexible.  

She's about to start attending preschool twice a week.  And somehow, I know she will enjoy it.  

I'm the one who wants to keep her home.  I want to keep her little.  I tell her this often, to which she always responds, "I need to grow big and strong.  I can't stay little forever."

I know you're going to grow, baby girl, but I hope that Daddy and I are able to foster all that is beautiful within you so that your light will continue to shine as brightly as it does now. 

I hope that you continue to find the humor in everyday situations.  

I hope that you keep building towers with your blocks and maybe one day you'll be building and designing real homes and buildings. 

I hope that you continue to care for people the way you do for your family.  

I hope that you are always observant of your surroundings.  You pay such attention to the details.  You bring the everyday to life just by asking life's simple questions.

You are beautiful, but what really defines you is your kind spirit and inquisitive and questioning mind.

I love you forever.

Monday, August 12, 2013

her face

Do you see her face?

Every morning, she runs into our bedroom as soon as she wakes up and snuggles up next to us.  

Every morning, she hugs Lucas and says, "Good morning, sweet boy.  I missed you."

Every morning, she kisses him ever so gently.  

And every morning, I get to see her face. 

 She closes her eyes, leans in to Lucas and just takes him in.  Sometimes she smiles.  Sometimes she just smells him.  Sometimes, she gives him 'nose kisses.' 

But, she always closes her eyes.  And somehow, through her closed eyes, I see her soul.  All it radiates is pure, sweet, true love.