Tuesday, February 3, 2015

A 19-Month Old and Future Baby Thoughts

Elijah is 19 months old now.

Running around, still in love with the outdoors, being an even pickier eater than I am, saying more words every day (the way he says flowers, fly, please, and thank you are particularly cute!), climbing everywhere, smashing into things and hurting himself constantly (so. very. accident. prone.), playing more with video boxes and tupperware containers than his actual toys, loves helping put things in the trash (yes, including things we DO NOT want in the trash) and helping out around the house like putting his clothes in the hamper or sweeping (er, his version of sweeping), following us around like a little puppy, in love with "oof oofs" (dogs), loves books and reading so long as he's in the right mood, enjoys craft time, loves people and saying bye bye and blowing kisses even to random strangers, absolutely loved Christmas lights, does well in car rides generally, does an incredible job laying still at the chiropractor's office and being adjusted/treated, still constantly sick with croup or bronchiolitis, and is very much a daddy's boy.

painting with his feet at daycare

He's a true delight and I marvel constantly at him. Even when the days are long and so very hard, or when the challenges that surface are beyond anything I think I can handle either physically or emotionally... I know this time will ultimately fly by. And I'm so very, very grateful for his precious little life.

I soak in his laugh and smile. I kiss his cheeks constantly. Any chance I get I hug him tight. We sing and dance and laugh and chase and snuggle and rock and read and pray and run and push him on cars and visit friends and enjoy life and look up at the sky and breathe in the crisp air and praise God for each new day we get with him.

I have no idea what the future holds. But I've been thinking about it constantly. Nagging at me every moment of the day is the question about whether or not we'll have another child.

It's completely 100% up to God. We are not trying and we are not preventing. We are praying for God's wisdom, direction, and timing in this matter.

We are SO thankful that it's up to him and not us, because we honestly don't know what we'd do. Sometimes we feel like 1 child is perfect - that we cannot handle another one. Something I never thought I'd say in a million years (I simply did not ever want to have an only child). Sometimes I desperately long to carry another baby. Sometimes I get overjoyed at the idea of a sibling for him (knowing full well that would be it - I'll be 37 in June so time is ticking!). Sometimes I get haunted by the idea of him growing up without a sibling to lean on when we're possibly old and gray. I adore my older brother and I cannot imagine my life without him. It pains me. But then I think about a family we know from growing up where the older brother was hit by a car at the age of 13, and she's growing up without a sibling.

Nothing is guaranteed. Nothing is certain in this life.

Sometimes I feel overwhelmed when I think about the next 3.5 years. Like everything is up to these next few years. Like when I turn 40 it's all over. Period.

It's hard to focus on simply trusting God.

To not let the fear in that threatens to consume me. To not let that overwhelming panic creep up and suffocate me fully.

Because, you see, if you've been around here long then you know how hard Elijah's birth story was. You know about my health concerns, the need for induction, the long labor process, the sudden need for a c-section, and his 11 days in the NICU which forever traumatized me (and still sometimes haunts me even though I've ultimately grown to be thankful for the experience and all that it taught us). You know how terrifying that all was for me.

And you can understand how hard it would be for me to do it all over again.

I often go back and re-read my friend Mary's birth story of her first daughter. It was even worse and scarier than mine, and has me on the edge of my seat every time I read it. It's a good reminder to me that not only could it have been worse (sorry Mary!), but the second time can be so much different than the first. No pregnancy or delivery is the same, of course.

But it's still so hard to know what to do and think and exactly how to pray about it. How to plan for it (like what to do with that spare toddler bed in our attic that Tim's brother gave us - do we use it for Elijah or do we convert his crib to the toddler bed which is what we anticipated for when he's ready to switch... or do we wait for a baby?... and do we give away his clothes that he's grown out of because if we do have another baby I can't tell you how very desperately I long for a girl and might just shrivel to bits if we were to have another boy, not that it's a big deal, but seriously...?!?!?!). Oh man.

Really though.

I trust God completely and leave it fully in his almighty hands. Not that it's always easy. There are days when I struggle and want to pull the reigns in and handle it all myself.

I want to know. Just like you want to know about that next thing in your life - job, car, house, move, or another baby for you.

The waiting is the hardest part.

Even youths shall faint and be weary, and young men shall fall exhausted; but they who wait for the LORD shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings like eagles; they shall run and not be weary; they shall walk and not faint. (Isaiah 40:30-31 ESV)
We are all really so very blessed. And the Lord will continue to reveal his plan for us as the days and years go on. Just keep trusting.

And I will too.

So no matter what happens and whether we have a second child or not, we are over-the-moon crazy about and in love with our little boy.

He has such a sweet, sensitive, helpful, kind spirit despite the stubborn willfulness and feisty attitude beginning to show. Below is a picture of him sweetly rocking a friend at daycare who was tired.

This kid. We love him so very much and cannot believe God blessed us with him. We don't want to take a single moment for granted!!


Rachel Jones said...

I hear you - praying for you as you look to the Lord for clarity and peace in whatever lies ahead. thinking ahead and planning is hard bc only He knows, but that is also the best place to be, in loving His hands! love you friend!

Carol said...

He is such a cutie. I just have to check in now and then and be updated on your site. What a little gift your little guy must be and everyday something new. Blessings to you all.