My Charlie

Dear Mister Charlie,

When you came out and the doctor pronounced you a boy, your Dad and I looked at each other kind of like "we know!"  I had that feeling the whole time, but then I thought it was because I just wanted a boy.  The last few weeks, I even prayed that if you were to come out and be a girl that I wouldn't be disappointed.  And that worked because I really did get just as excited at the thought of a girl.  But there you were... my little man.

You got off to a rough start at life.  You came out blue and for the first five minutes, all I could do was hold your dad's hand and pray the word "Please."  Over and over and over.  And then I waited too long to try to feed you (though many people assured me it wasn't my fault) and your blood sugar got low and we started a cycle of it being too low for you to want to eat and having to give you a bottle and your body temperature dropping.  And that landed you in the NICU.  After they regulated your blood sugar within 24 hours, they said your sodium levels were low and it was concerning that you hadn't lost weight.  Your dad was logical about this... you were on an IV so you were being overhydrated which meant your sodium would be low and you wouldn't lose as much weight as a normal baby losing water weight!  But still we stayed there in the NICU for four days.  Four very, very long days and even longer nights.  While you were there you had at least 20 heel pricks, an IV in each of your hands plus an extra hole from a botched attempt, a Hepatitis B shot, a circumcision and your "tongue tie" clipped.  And through it all, you were amazing.  The doctors all commented on your sweet spirit and mellow personality.  You were truly a trooper.

And then you came home.  To your home that had been prepared just for you (okay, the wet bar isn't for you...) and the people who were here to take care of you.  Your B (BeckyLozier's brand new name!) made more meals than she'd had to make in the last year, did more laundry than she's had to do in the last ten years and generally made sure your mother was alive so that she could keep you alive.  I have never been more thankful for my mom.  When she left, she told me that I was ready.  She said, "we've been preparing your house and preparing you for this for months.  And you're ready."  I never felt less ready for anything in my life.

Speaking of not being ready for something... I was NOT prepared for the crying.  Oh the crying that took place from the minute you finally returned to me after many hours after you were born, hungry but with blood sugar so low that you wouldn't eat and I didn't know how to feed you (it's a long story that makes me angry just thinking about it) to the first night I left you to go to dinner with my family to the night B left to the first night I didn't sleep with you in your room just three nights ago... I didn't know that the tiniest things would trigger tears.  Many, many tears.  And there have been tears of joy, too.  I look at you and think "You're mine!  All mine!" and it overwhelms me to the point of tears.

I already know some things about you...
- You are "the tornado" (as we called you in the NICU)... you are perfectly happy until you are not.  And then you start yelling at high speeds until the issue is resolved.
- You don't mind getting your nails filed when you are napping on my lap.
- Right as you are closing your eyes and drifting to sleep, you often bust out with a huge grin.  I wonder what you are grinning about.
- If you have a full tummy, you don't mind getting a bath.
- You love your Mama Roo.
- Everyone says that you have a very strong neck.  I don't know what's normal, but I do know that your Pop (my dad's new name) calls you his overachiever, so I can only assume that you must excel in this category... among others!
- You're awesome.

And here you are...

I love you so much.  You are napping right now across the room, just six feet away... and it's possible that I actually miss you!  Is that lame or just a new fact of life?  I'm okay with it.  I will snuggle with you again soon.



Mrs. Porter said...

Liz, this makes me so happy and so tearful because I can so relate! Being a mom is the most amazing blessing! I'm so happy for you, friend. I love u. Charlie is just beautiful. Congrats! Seriously.

Unknown said...

As usual, tears of joy for you and Daniel. I love that you wrote this all down. He's so precious...My little Charlie Boo love muffin.

Technically he's yours.


The Bradens said...

I love this. It made me cry! Charlie is ADORABLE and you are such a sweet mommy.

sarah said...

Oh the tears... I think I cried at everything for 6 weeks straight. Happy, sad, frustrated... when you're so tired and hormonal, it takes nothing to trigger those tears!

Sounds like you're having fun getting to know baby Charlie! He's so precious, Friend!

kristin fulghum said...

congrats liz! he is so adorable

Writinggal said...

Thanks for sharing the story and the pictures! I love the one where you're holding him and he has that too-big shirt on. His face is so precious. And yes, the rest of us moms should have warned you about the crying! It's part love/part hormones.

Katie Norwood said...

Well if I'm crying this much about YOUR baby, who the heck knows how much I'll cry when I someday have my own. I mean, seriously. So, so sweet and wonderful. You're an amazing mom - I can tell already. I love the part about him being all yours. What a wonderful feeling! Love you friend.

Schulz Sightings said...

What a sweet sweet letter. great way to remember all the little details of those first few days that are such a blur. He is so precious, I can't wait to get well so I can see him up close!
You are a sweet mom already.

katie newton said...

i love you. i love charlie. i love your letter.... (sobbing right now).


SOOOO many happy times ahead for you guys!!! :)

Beth LoSurdo said...

Liz, I am so happy for you and I just can't wait to see Charlie!!!! He is ABSOLUTELY ADORABLE! It is so precious to see how you are loving motherhood and I love that you share it with us! Your posts make me want to cry because it takes me back to some of those same moments :)...Love you and praying for you friend, and I can't wait to come see your little man. Congrats!

Haegelin Family said...

he is so precious, liz! love him and this letter - you are going to be so happy you have these thoughts recorded. can't wait to meet charlie and his fabulous hair!

Travis and Rebecca said...

love you and your sweet charlie.