Happy Birthday Joaquin!
At this very moment a year ago I was hooked up to monitors at the hospital, getting no sleep. I was anxious, I was nervous, I was scared. I had been on bed rest for 6 weeks, I had been seeing a specialist for 5 months, I was scared. It was just you and me this whole time, yes your Daddy was there he was taking care of us; he was making sure we ate, he was making sure we were comfortable, he was providing for us and loving us but it was really just you and me. Daddy was asleep in the hospital while the nurses came in to check on us, he was stressed out and worried but he was not in our space. It was just you and me. When the doctor came in to break my water, Daddy was holding my hand just like he should; but he didn’t feel what we felt. I don’t think either one of us will ever know the fear and anxiety that Daddy felt while you and I were working together, only Daddy will know that. Poor Daddy, he must have been so scared and worried. His whole heart was there, right in front of him, going through so much pain, about to be born….poor Daddy!
But you and I, we knew we had to be strong. We had to be strong for each other and we had to be strong for Daddy.
Joaqiun, you arrived so quickly, the doctor told us that the best case scenario would be that you’d be with us before 5 pm, but it might not be for a whole day! I was ready, I was prepared to stay in that hospital as long as I needed to and work as hard as I could until you were ready but you came quicker than I expected. From the time they broke my water at 6 am it took you 7 hours to make your entrance. And yes, looking back, you may not have been as ready as we thought. The doctors thought you were only 2 weeks early but it turned out you were probably 4 or even 6 weeks early. I’m sorry for that. Mommy felt like the doctors knew best and did what they suggested. She won’t make that mistake again.
When you finally arrived in that dramatic entrance, I was so crazy excited, happy and thankful. I couldn’t wait to hold you. The doctor let Daddy cut your embilical cord and I got to hold you. Do you remember? Do you remember that you snuggled me? Do you remember that moment when you reached up and touched my cheek? Do you remember when you nursed from me? I remember. I remember every single second that I had with you…. every single second until you were taken away from me. You stopped breathing and all of the sudden doctors were rushing in, you were taken away from me and all I could see was people working on you. Daddy was watching you, he was right there with you, poor Daddy. I was still on my bed, the doctors were working on me, stitching me up…they were trying to explain what they were doing to me but I didn’t care, I didn’t even pay attention to them. All I could see was you. You and Daddy. I watched Daddy and I watched you. I remember Grandma came in for a bit and she watched you too. Not too long after you were born and taken away from me to the other side of the room, you were taken away from me again; but this time you had to go a different part of the hospital where I couldn’t watch you, and Daddy went with you. I can’t explain to you how empty I felt in that moment, how alone I felt while I watched you and Daddy leave that room. I pray it doesn’t happen again. But you were with Daddy and Daddy was with you. At that moment you two had each other.
I worked hard before I could see you again, I had to prove to the doctors that I could go to the bathroom on my own before they would let me go see you and I did! What an accomplishment lol! I couldn’t wait to see you! I was so excited! I walked in and there were doctors all around you, and Daddy was there! I got out of my wheelchair to see you but I wasn’t strong enough so my nurse made me sit me back down, but they let me hold you! I was so happy! Finally, I got to see you again and hold you!
The next two weeks were a blur, and you know what Joaquin? The next two weeks, yes they were a significant moment in our lives but they don’t determine our lives, they don’t dictate our lives. We spent two weeks in the NICU, yes YOU spent two weeks hooked up to monitors, you had a nurse watching you 24 hours a day and I was there the whole time. I lived there with you. I was there for every feeding every 3 hours, I went back to my room in the NICU and pumped milk for you, I tried to rest, I tried to eat but mainly I just worried and cried. It was not the best time of our lives but it WAS part of our lives. Two weeks after you were born Daddy and I took you home! Home! Finally! And do you know what Joaquin? This past year since you were born, has been the absolute best year of my life! Every day I get to wake up and play with you, we exercise, we cuddle, we play; and every night I get to put you to sleep. You are so extremely curious, I absolutely love watching you figure things out. You study everything and everyone. I love that. You’re not easily amused, it takes a lot to get a smile out of you (unless you’re Mokey, Jet or Pepper!), but that smile…when you smile it’s like my heart explodes…I just love to see you smile.
Being your Mom is an absolute blessing. I love you with all of my heart, you are without a doubt the best part of me. A year ago we got off to a rocky start, but we did it together and no matter what from here on out, I’ll be by your side. I’ll be your biggest supporter, I’ll be your biggest cheerleader, I’ll hold you accountable, I’ll be here for you. I can’t wait to see what the next year will hold for you, I can’t wait to see all the things you accomplish. Happy Birthday little love, I don’t think there’s any way Daddy and I can ever explain how much you mean to us <3