Saturday, June 14, 2014

Liam Turns 3

Liam at the Minnesota Children's Museum
I've started writing this post several times now. My baby is three years old today! My baby baby.  I find it hard to express in words what this day means to me.  It's a reminder of all that we went through when he was born.  It's a reminder of how far he has come.  And he has come so far.

Three years ago, my water broke.  At 33 weeks and 6 days pregnant, it was too soon.  Knowing that Liam was going to need surgery, I worried that immaturity would make everything worse, and his recovery harder.

We drove to Abbot Northwestern Hospital, where I was cared for by some of the kindest and most capable professionals in the business.  There are not enough thank-you's in the world for the team of doctors and nurses who talked to me, held my hand, and eased my fear.

It's strange when something so happy is also terrifying.  But the sound that Liam made when he was born, that strong loud wail that let everyone within earshot know that he was a fighter, made me believe instantly, that he was going to be okay.  Not that I was never afraid again, but somewhere deep inside, I believed in him.

His life has not been without challenges.  He works so much harder than other children, without getting quite as far.  But I don't think you can underestimate the power of determination.  And Liam has been determined for longer than he's been able to breath.  Nothing will hold him back, not even the lasting effects of having been born  with an encephalocele.

This year Liam has gotten so much better at walking and moving.  Once he had that down, he began a language explosion.  He's not speaking in sentences yet, but he knows all of our names, and loves singing his favorite songs.  He also loves being read to.  If I end a book, he'll cry until I start it again.  He wants to play and read and sing, at all times, if he can make that happen.

He loves his family, and we love him.  He is our everyday miracle, a gift given to us by Modern Medicine, and those trained to do things that could never have been done before.  Every day with him is a gift.  I wish I could slow it all down to make it last.

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