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Sunday, December 27, 2009

Gifts


Home! He's finally home!


It's been a wonderful time to reconnect with myself this past week. I was able to indulge in a few things:


1. Sleep
2. Movies (Sherlock Holmes!)
3. Cooking (very cathartic for me)



These are the hobbies (well, I don't know if I'd include sleeping as a hobby...) that I don't get alot of time to do, and I was thankful to have it. But now, it reverts back to the regular chaos that is my son.


I couldn't be happier. 


I think about the gifts that he did get from "Fred" (from my best friend and myself) and how the one thing that excited him the most was the one thing he had asked Fred for. Indiana Jones: The Adventure Continues. He got down on his knees and pulled a Jimi Hendrix like move to honor and worship the coveted DS game. I couldn't help but smile to myself. That unbridled excitement and joy gave me immeasurable joy, too. He's busy in the room with me, as I type this, traipsing through the Lego jungle. 


I recall when I was pregnant with him we were considering names. Ethan was a front runner for a long time. Jackson was tossed out early, as my mother in law (with superior cunning) said she would call him "Jackie". I liked the name Nathaniel, as I was influenced by the character in "Six Feet Under". (I know, very morbid to name your child after a funeral home director) However, Nathaniel Daniel sounded RIDICULOUS, so Nathan Daniel it became. 


And with the myriad of baby naming books comes the meanings behind those names. Nathan comes from Hebrew which means "gift from God". There are so many instances where I have come to realize what an incredible gift he is. 


I suffered through two miscarriages before I was pregnant with Nathan. The doctors told me I was high risk due to the miscarriages and my leap incision when I was 24. At the 7th week, I started to bleed a bit, which was always a sign that the pregnancy wasn't holding. I went into the doctor's office and they said, "This one is going to stay." He wiped away my tears and I started progesterone for a few weeks. At 9 weeks, I saw his little body and his tiny seed of a heart and heard it beating, like a hummingbird's wings. I began to believe in the power of this child.


At 16 weeks, they said that I should have a cerclage due to my high risk. I told them no. I felt if he hasn't tried to claw his way out now, he was going to stay in there until he was ready. 


Boy, did he.


At almost 42 weeks, I was due to have an induction on the morning of July 8th. At 12:30 am on July 7th, my water broke. Now, I had had two bouts of false labor already. I called my OB and he said "Are you sure?" I said, "There's a two foot puddle around my feet." He replied, "I'll be there in 20 minutes."


In Nathan fashion, he tried to emerge into this world face first and arm out. After an emergency (but not unexpected) c-section, Nathan Daniel Sheridan entered this realm silently, at first. He cried about 30 seconds later and I heaved my breath out, which I had been holding. 


In a video of him about an hour after his birth, he is LOOKING around the room. He is observing, aware of everyone there. He hears me talking and he turns his head. His eyes are wide open and his brilliant brain was already taking notes. 


My child, to this day, continues to give me the gift of him. I was given this child for a reason, and I am thankful, every single day, that I am his mother. He has changed me, given me hope, made me work the hardest I ever have (and continue to work) to be who I am. Without Asperger's, I don't think I would be where I am now.

It has given me purpose, focus and clarity. It has given me a way to communicate with my son and the power of my voice helps others and lets them know that they are not alone.



Having a special needs child can be incredibly overwhelming and damn scary. We are brought to the edge of our strength, sanity and reason and then brought there again. During her Christmas Eve sermon called "Stillness", the Reverend Rebecca Pugh Brown said, "The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness has not overcome it. The light will always have power over the dark." I hope that my blog can be that small light in the all encompassing dark.


As the world revolves once again, and the New Year begins, remember we all have power. Power to change, power to heal, power to create. I thank you all from the bottom of my heart for all of your words, your encouragement and most of all, your support and love.  I wish you all many blessings for the coming year.


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2 comments:

  1. You have become such an amazing writer, I always enjoy your posts. Your writing reminds me of a certain style of American furniture, if you'll pardon the odd comparison -- striking and beautiful because it is simple, eminently functional, and tremendously strong. Everything it needs to be for the purpose for which it was made. I hope you continue to find this joy every day.

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  2. Steph,

    You continue to always make me feel like I can do anything. I wish I had listened all those years ago, but I am listening now. Thank you so much for that comment. It is so dear to me. I may have to use it later! May I quote you? ;)

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