"Things won are done,
Joy's Soul lies in the Doing."
- William Shakespeare

Sunday, January 29, 2012

A Decade

A decadeTen years.  The Boy has been in the world for a mind-blowing ten years.  How can it even be possible that it's already been ten years since the day this gentle soul came into our lives...and yet...how can it only be ten years since that day?  I often look at my Boy, as all parents most likely do, as an amalgamation of us, his parents, his ancestors, his upbringing, and himself.  I see bits of the Mister in him...in his stance, in the way he rides a board, in his interests, and in his gentleness (and gentleman-liness).  I also see bits of myself in him...in those elfin ears, in the pointy chin, in his tendency to expect rather a lot from himself, and judge himself when he doesn't meet those expectations.  But mostly, I look at him, and see who he uniquely is, as himself.  I watch his inner strength and character gradually emerging as he grows older, and makes his presence known in the big, wide world.  From time to time, I catch a glimpse from somewhere in the depths of those soulful blue eyes, of the man he will become.  It's awe-inspiring to know that I had a hand in creating this Boy, and to know that whatever role I have had, and will have, in helping him find his way in the world...it's mainly up to him to choose his path.  And he's just that sort of kid, that I don't have to worry that he will choose a good path.

Ten years ago, today, this Boy was born, and had a terrifyingly close brush with not making it into the world.  After a textbook pregnancy, this kiddo had a rocky first meeting with life on the outside.  For absolutely no known medical reason, my Boy went rapidly, shockingly, into distress, quite early in labor, and was born via emergency cesarean.  Scary emergency, as I was given general anaesthetic because things were looking quite grim.  He was born with only a very weak heartbeat, not breathing, grey, and floppy, the poor wee thing.  I didn't get to meet my Boy until much later in the day, after I awakened from the anaesthetic, nor was I able to hold him for 24 hours, nor share a room with him for 3 days, while he recovered in the NICU.  But, recover he did, wonderfully and quickly, and a week later, we took him home to begin our new lives together as a family of three.

For such a rough start, he has been an incredibly easy kid.  He's the sort of kid that makes other people want to have children.  The sort that makes the Mister and I feel proud that we're doing a good job (even if, truth be told, it is just his nature to be amazing, more than our parenting.)  The sort that, as a toddler, we could tell him once, just once, to never touch something dangerous, or to never break such-and-such-a-rule, and he never would.  The sort who, at a couple of weeks old, our visiting midwife held him, and sighed, as she looked into his eyes, and said:  "Bless.  He's an Old Soul, this one."  It's true.  Just look into those eyes.

It's a very special place, being the firstborn, in a family.  We're all new to the game, learning each progressive stage together, and we have to trust each other, and ourselves, to figure it out as we go.  This kid couldn't make it easier.  Or more rewarding.

Being the eldest myself, I always longed for a big brother. Of course, for the obvious perk of him having cute friends that I could hang out with (which was an enticing option in the awkward early-teen years, as I was rather a late bloomer regarding boys, and a bit of a spaz around them.), but also how great would it have been to have an older brother there, looking out for his little sister, protecting her, and leading by example?  The Boy does this so very well, with the Girl.  I love it.  Patient and strong, gentlemanly and funny, he's just the sort of big brother all of us wished to have, when we were young girls.

Ten years with this Boy has gone so quickly, and has been so very full, I feel as if my head is spinning with all these sentimental reminiscences.  But, what's a mother to do?  We raise our children while straddling the past, filled with a vast catalog of our memories of them; the present, in hopes of not missing one single thing; and the future, wondering and dreaming who these little humans of ours will one day become.  So, if a little teary-eyed sentimentality should pop in for a while, we may as well go with it, as part of the job, right?

Happy Tenth Birthday, Tyler Sage.  You are such an astounding blessing, to all those who know you, and all those who have yet to meet you.  Indeed, the world is better for having you in it.

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