Twenty nine years ago. I can’t believe it was that long ago. I remember the pain and fear like it was yesterday. Twenty nine years ago our world changed. We didn’t know how much it had changed that day, but we knew it did. Twenty nine years ago an amazing old soul came into our life. He came with all the fire and glory that a large baby brings with it.
I came as close to death as I imagine a woman comes in childbirth without actually crossing to the other side. But the light was there and the pull was strong. The birth of my first, while a typically long and difficult birth, was pretty typical. After thirty six hours, my daughter Erin, arrived and absolute peace filled the room. It was a feeling of overwhelming peace that my husband and I agreed we had never known before. I wish I could say it was the same when my son, Kyle, was born. But it wasn’t. He nearly took my life. The ordeal was excruciating and scary for all involved. By the time it was over and Kyle was here, we were all exhausted, including him. There were two midwives working as hard as I’ve ever seen two women work to bring a child safely into this world. He needed more room and they did all they could to give Kyle the room he was demanding. Miraculously, after many hours and many different strategies, he finally came. The exhaustion and relief were overwhelming. Baby boy and Mom were fine.
Kyle slept for thirty six hours straight. I woke him. I was panicking, as I couldn’t imagine a new born sleeping for so long. One midwife stayed with us for a full forty eight hours after his birth. She assured us that at ten pounds two ounces he would be fine. And he was. It was, after all, hard work for him too. Everyone in the room cried with relief, particularly my husband.
Tonight we celebrated that day when Kyle came into our lives. As I sat across a table watching him as he shared funny stories with his dad I marveled at his size, his newly developed full beard, his sparkling eyes, and his absolute beauty. He was big then and he’s still big, towering over me at six feet plus. I smiled as I thought about how much I love him and because I know he loves me. Absolute peace finally filled the room.
It’s been a wonderful twenty nine years. We love you Kyle.
***Author’s Note – As I showered this morning I thought, “Oh, I can’t share this story. It’s just too personal.” Then I read the quote from today’s prompt, “Even the silence has a story to tell you. Just listen, listen.” -Jacqueline Woodsen, and realized that I should. First of all, I love Jacqueline Woodsen’s writing. It moves me, always. And this is a side of my son’s story we haven’t discussed hardly at all with him. We’ve been silent, fearful of the buried emotions it would stir. Now I feel I am ready to share because I think he is ready to listen without burden. He is his own man. And for that, I rejoice.