Thursday, June 30, 2011

The Birthday Cake

The birthday cake was my favorite part of the birthday party, which surprised me a little bit.  I think it was because for the first time that whole day I didn’t have to do anything but sit back and sing “Happy Birthday” to my kids.  And I was standing there, singing, and watching my kids gaze at their birthday cake and lit candles with little smiles on their faces and I couldn’t help but just think a little bit.

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I thought back to when I was not even 23 weeks pregnant and was hospitalized for preterm labor.  I thought back to all those weeks in the hospital when we were terrified that we were going to have our kids too early.

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I thought back to the day when I actually had them, and how everyone was running down the halls with me just laying there on the bed and the nurses kept telling me not to move just in case I accidentally had a baby before we got to the operating room.

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And I thought back to those days in the NICU when Rosemary was getting a lumbar puncture to check for infection while I sat outside the NICU crying and waiting for a report from the doctor.  Then there was the rest of the time in the NICU when things were going okay but we were on edge all the time knowing that in a matter of seconds things could be not be okay. 

233-edit2 WAnd I wished that someone had shown me any of these photos back then.  Just one photo to reassure us that things really were going to be okay and that we could stop worrying so much. 

While I standing there taking all this in, I was trying not to cry because how do you explain crying during the “Happy Birthday” song?!!  And with the three big kids there celebrating their third birthday, and my husband standing nearby holding our fourth child, I was just quite simply happy, and the happiness has stayed with me since then.  It was a powerful moment.

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And then we ate cake.

047 W Again, thank you Cathy and Amanda for the awesome photos.


Tina Michelle said...

Awwww, that was so great to read. Kids just do not understand the power of their birthdays on their mamas and never will until they have their own. That is a lot to take in while singing happy birthday to your sweeties. I am glad you could share that with us!

Janine said...

Wow. I cried. As I read your post I reflected back on my ONE baby in the NICU. I know those frightening moments all too well and I appreciate what you are saying. Your feelings are beautiful, thank you for sharing them.

JoLynn said...

Every now and then it's nice to pause and reflect...and the thankfulness starts all over again. Happy birthday to your 3 beautiful babies!

Esther and Brian said...

gorgeous children...happy birthday, little ones!

let us know how their 3-year appt is/was if you would like to share! curious on their growth--i think that my twins have only grown 3 inches at most since their 24 months appt..but we still have 2 more months before turning 3!


Heather said...

Thanks, everyone. That was a hard blog post to write. It was a private moment, but at the same time it felt very right to share it.

Esther -- will do! Our appointment is this coming Wednesday!

Lora G said...

SO beautifully put. I think any parent can certainly relate! And I LOVE the photos! They capture the moments perfectly!!

Lindsey Wolfe said...

Yup - you made me get all teary eyed! So glad the kids had such a great day! (and you too!)

aruss said...

Beautiful post Heather! Made me tear up as well. I wonder if those NICU memories ever go away...