Monday, September 15, 2008

Cole James

I cannot believe that two years ago today I brought the most amazing little guy into the world. I was terrified, but the moment I held him my life changed. He looked at me with one eye open and my heart melted. I thanked God and realized that a life dream had come true. I'd always wanted a son and here he was. This perfect little creature that I had been entrusted to nurture through life.

I named him Cole because I felt it was a strong and timeless name. James because it's a family name on my Mom's side and one of the kindest, strongest, most compassionate men I ever knew was my grandfather James Thomas.

Those first few days I would hold Cole and openly sob because never could I have imagined loving someone so much. My ex was sure I was suffering from post partum depression, but I was really just overcome with joy. I felt so vulnerable. It was amazing.

I had every kind of sling imaginable. I wore Cole everywhere. I held him. I nursed him. I swaddled him, rocked him and soothed him. This precious little gift. When he was up in the middle of the night, that's when I would have some fairly serious conversations with God about the awesome responsibility He had given me with Cole. I'd pray. Pray for the wisdom to get it right. The patience to make the right decisions. The love to forgive all. The strength to be his Mom. The time to make an impression. These conversations with God led to a lot of raw emotion. It made me realize so many things about myself. It made me want to be a better person and I've sought to grow and become that person.
Leaving Cole to go back to work was so hard. I was able to be with him for 14 weeks and work from home quite a bit until he was 6 months old. The guilt was overwhelming, but really I had no choice. I am a working mother. I struggle with it often, but I'm hoping one day Cole will see that I manged to balance it. Sometimes not very well, but he's being raised by a strong, independent woman. Maybe that will help him learn to appreciate one in his adult life.

All of this before he ever even muttered Mommy. As the months have passed it has been amazing to watch Cole develop his own little personality. He's so tough and stubborn. Independent and feisty. He's smart and he's loving. He's funny. I hope I'm showing him how to be a Godly man. I'm hoping that he'll be compassionate and know how very much I love him. He's so chatty (I have no idea where he gets it from) He goes to sleep talking and wakes up talking. He's smiling most of the time. Running around most of the time. Such a joy for me. Especially when he says "Ok Mommy.." " Night Night Mommy.." "Love you Mommy.." when he says "No Mommy.." not so great...When he sits down on the ground and looks at me like "make me Mommy" again- not so great. When he finds and plays with Tobie's poo like yesterday...REALLY not so great...

I've blogged openly about my struggle with my divorce. The greatest weight in my decision was, of course, for Cole. I spent most of my life making decisions, staying out of trouble and away from boys because I didn't want to be a single Mom. Look how that turned out for me? God does have a sense of humor doesn't He? Someday, when he asks, I'll be honest with Cole about what happened between his father and I. I assure him constantly that his Dad loves him very much.

Two years. It has gone by so quickly. I can't believe it. What happens when I'm writing about his 18th birthday..What kind of man will my son be? Will I be able to give him every opportunity? Enough time? Will he hate me for the decisions I've made? These are the things that weigh on me. For the most part, I was able to keep it together while going through what I've been going through. Cole rarely saw me cry, but I cannot lie. There have been days in the past when it was too overwhelming. I'm embarrassed to admit this as we are to be strong for our kids. On one particular day (I'll call it my rock bottom) I just sat down on the kitchen floor..sobbing (quietly)..hoping Cole would pay attention to the Max and Ruby episode I'd just turned on and not me. Around the corner he toddled. "Mommy?" When he saw me, he put his arms around me and said "It's okay Mommy.." and then he sat down in front of me and smiled. How do you keep crying after that?

At almost two, Cole was right. It has been okay and it will continue to be okay. I find my greatest joy in being Cole's Mom. I've become stronger and wiser being Cole's Mom. I've known more sorrow and happiness being a Mom than I ever thought imaginable and it has been amazing. I've been changed by my son. I am thankful and grateful for the past two years. I cannot wait to watch him grow.

So Happy Birthday Cole James. I love you.