A year ago tomorrow, I got to see my baby's face for the first time. It's so strange to think I didn't know what he would look like, and now I can't get his face out of my mind. That face has changed so much in the last year. I have changed too. No one can prepare you for the love of a child. It's so magnificent.
In one year, our hearts have been filled to the brim with joy for Colton Sterling. How is it possible that I can grow to love him more? Thought I would reflect through some flash backs over the year... cause each time I was in the shower thinking about what to write about I got lost in these random memories.
-Sitting in our bath tub, sucking down Gatorade and timing contractions. I remember telling myself, each minute of discomfort gets me that much closer to having him out of my belly and onto my chest.
-That first feeding in his room, in our rocking chair. I was in my fluffy robe and he was all swaddled up.
-His first cold at three weeks. I felt so helpless, but we got through it.
-That time when I was cooking and he was just watching me from the Boppy, and Brad Paisley's "There Goes My Life" came on. I bawled like a baby, and forced myself to sing it to him, even though my life wasn't really going anywhere, it was just beginning.
-On one of our first trips out I was so nervous about not forgetting anything that I forgot to buckle the kid INTO his car seat. When I got to the destination, he was sleeping soundly, folded forward, and I felt like the worst mother in the history of the universe.
-On Mother's day when Colton smiled at me for the first time.
-When we would nap together and he would wake up happy realizing I was already right there.
-When Chris first successfully got him to go to sleep for him one weekend and he came out pumping his fatherly fists victorious.
-Our first family vacation to Montana together. The highs and lows of traveling were experienced.
-When I left him with a girlfriend and he had a huge blow out and cried himself to sleep. I felt horrible but glad I had that one under my belt.
-When I put him on grass for the first time. Thus began our summer evening front yard hangouts. Colton decided outside was his happy place.
-When I walked to Trader Joe's and he decided to be inconsolable on the way back. I wore him in the Moby all the way home, pushing my groceries in the stroller, uphill, against the wind.
-When he figured out how to pull himself up to a stand in his crib and let out the biggest grin known to man, he was so proud of himself.
-When after several failed attempts at solids, I gave him a huge slice of my homemade lasagna and you thought he had died and gone to heaven. We skipped purees all together and have never looked back. This was a kid after my own foodie heart, at least for the time being.
-When we gave him a big strip of perfectly cooked steak to taste/suck on. He clung to it like his sustenance depended on it. He is my husband's child too after all.
-When he went in the swing at the park for the first time and was terribly distracted with how the chain was connected to the chair to even smile for the camera.
-His first stomach flu. And then mommy's first stomach flu with him. Probably my roughest night in the entire year.
-When he discovered that water comes out of a hose.
-When his first word "momma" was said, one beautiful Saturday morning all the way home on our little walk with him in the backpack.
-When his second word was "daddy" and suddenly I was referred to this name as well with genuine affection for about a week straight until he figured out he didn't have to choose just one word at a time.
-When he started recognizing the sound of Chris' keys in the front door, and would crawl at a cheetah's pace to meet him, and then sob if he didn't pick him up that very instant.
-When I let him cry in his crib for an hour and a half one afternoon, after truly believing that nothing could possibly be wrong, only to find he had been sitting in a dirty diaper. I cried and apologized to him and he slept in my arms for the remainder of the afternoon.
-When I showed him a ladybug for the first time and he quickly grabbed it and ate it.
-When I let him go naked around the house for fun and he kept looking down to see that indeed there was nothing holding him back!
-When I wanted to keep him awake while I walked home with a friend and so I gave into the anticlimactic moment and gave him my ice cream cone. He was a perfect angel child sucking and slurping all the way home.
Colton Sterling, I love saying your full name in that sing songy voice. I love getting on the floor with you and hearing you squeal. I love feeding you and watching you drift to sleep. This year of life has been the best year of life so far. I am so exhausted, overjoyed and overwhelmed by this motherhood thing but my heart keeps telling me to go on. And so I shall. With joy. You are my treasure.