Sometimes I feel as if my life didn't exist before being a mom. And then sometimes, I can't believe how quickly 9 years flies by.
I really couldn't be more proud of who he is becoming. Just in the last few months I have begun to see glimpses of the man he's becoming. I couldn't imagine a better big brother for my kids.
Just a few examples of his wonderfulness (if I may)....
We were busily trying to get through breakfast, dressing, packing for an outing and trying to get out the door in time. I was cleaning up from breakfast, still in my PJs, and the babies were trying to crawl up the stairs. Noah stops me and said "I'll finish the dishes, you can get dressed and get the babies dressed." The same morning he also managed to fill and distribute water bottles to each of the other kids in the car and carried one of the babies to the suburban and buckled him in. I didn't ask any of it of him.
This week at Costco, we return to the car, he opens the door and moves the seat so that Zak, Maggy and Hannah can climb in the back, he stays with one baby in the cart while I'm buckling the other in, he unloads the groceries into the car. He then returns the cart, gladly, to the front of the store "so if someone else needs a dry cart, it won't get wet in the rain." Today at the grocery store, he returned our cart as well as two others to the front of the store.
A week or so ago, the flu trampled through our house. The twins were struck first. Noah was ready and willing to take a fussy, clingy Nathan, even at the risk of being puked on.
I remember being told that it will not be the lessons we teach our children, but what we learn from them, that is more significant. Going back to his birth story, as we rehearsed it with him tonight, and realizing that there has been a recurring theme of challenges and struggles that will make us stronger and bring us closer.
My pregnancy with Noah was faced with abruptions, bleeding, preterm labor and eventually delivery 5 weeks early. I really was so unprepared to be a mother, but because of these challenges, we were forced to charge in and find our way. Not with out mistakes, but better for all of it.
Nursing didn't come easily for the boy who wasn't quite developed enough to suck-swallow-breathe. I was pumping, feeding, supplementing- an exhausting process. Eventually, I got the gumption to end the cycle and marathon nursed for about 4 days until he could be satisfied with a complete feeding in less than 30 minutes. And we nursed to a year. I'm so glad we did.
I remember telling people that we were going to homeschool, to hear their response "I'd kill my kid if I had to be their teacher AND mom." And I could relate! It seemed that we were such different personalities that we might never find a way to work together. And here we are, into year 4, and he's my favorite student! As much as I knew we were challenged in working together, I also claimed that we would find a way to make it work and be better for it.
I thank God for my son, and for all the lessons I've learned by being his Mom!
Happy Birthday Noah!