05/11/09 - 3 years old, 36.5" tall, 27lbs
Those are the stats from our first visit to the pediatrician when we got back. We've done all his blood work and only have his urine sample to collect (not looking forward to that!). We have to redo all his immunizations, which I'm really not looking forward to either. I have an appointment on Monday with the pediatrician to discuss this, and then an appointment on Thursday, the 11th, to talk to a neurologist. Hopefully all will go well and Eli won't be too freaked out!
I've been thinking about the last month of being home. (Sat marked one month for us.) There have been some ups and downs, for sure, but through it all I've loved being a mom to Eli. I've seen God's work in me, like the fact that my temper hasn't flared despite my lack of sleep and eating well. Dave and I are doing great, with only a few hiccups since being home. (Communication ROCKS!)
And I attribute my love of motherhood to God. Although I've always wanted to be a mom and knew it would be wonderful, I also knew it would be a time of refinement. Just as God refines us through our spouses, He also refines us through our children. I realized my selfishness when I married Dave, but I thought I had come a long way! Not so. Eli has made me realize how selfish I still am and how much work God has to do in me. I have to change my focus to be about how I can best serve both my husband AND my son without taking away my service to God. Yikes! No more sleeping in or participating in whatever I want. No more movie nights or dates for a while. Even so, I LOVE being a mom. Sometimes I don't think my heart is big enough to hold all the love I have for him.
It's amazing to see how my perspective of God has changed, ever so slightly. I guess you can never understand what pain our Father has in disciplining us until you have to discipline your own children. You can understand academically "this hurts me more than it hurts you" and passages that talk about discipline, like Hebrews 12:11 "No discipline seems pleasant at the time, but painful. Later on, however, it produces a harvest of righteousness and peace for those who have been trained by it" But until you have to be the one to put that little one in a time out, or bend them over your knee, you just don't know the tears that sometimes flow, out of sight, afterwards.
We've stumbled in to a rough draft of a routine. In the morning, Eli wakes up and plays quietly in his bed until Papa gets up to take a shower. Once the water turns on I hear this "MOMMA!" Like "Don't forget about me!" I get Eli out of bed and go to the guest room, which is where I sleep with the door open...just in case...and we cuddle for about 15mins. It's a sweet time filled with hugs and kisses (he started kissing me yesterday!) and silly faces. He cracks me up! Then Papa comes and gets him and they eat breakfast together while I get ready for the day. Snack is between 9/10am and lunch is at 11:30am, followed by nap from noon-2pm. Then he gets up cranky, plays while crying for a few minutes, I scoop him up and we rock for a minute or two until he wakes up more (he won't let me do this when he first gets up...don't know why). Then he's a peach. Snack around 3pm, outside play time until dinner at 6pm. 7:30pm bath, 8pm read books and go to bed.
He falls asleep on his own, even sleeps through the night by himself now, and, like I said, stays in his bed until I get him. Pretty amazing stuff for only a week! He opens cabinets and drawers, but doesn't get anything out. He points out when we've left the baby gate that leads to stairs and the basement open. He lets me know when I've missed a step in our bed time routine. And he's a great help at bringing in groceries (doing his best strongest man impression). I try to let him help me with as much as possible because it seems to make him light up. He understands pretty much what we say, but doesn't have too many words just yet. But we communicate just fine.
I'm starting to slowly change our routine to add more things like prayer and devotions. I have this really great Bible book a friend gave me at a shower. I read a Bible story to him before nap and bed time, using my homiletics skills to recap what we learned the story before (go bsf training!!) I know Eli loves this time, too, because no matter what he's doing (crying, playing, chatting to himself) he stops and listens while Momma reads the story. And he nods his head when I recap what we've learned. "Wasn't that a great lesson about how much God loves us?" Nod. "Wow. I really like learning about how God can use even the small people for big things, don't you?" Nod. It's so cute (like everything else!)
So as our first month of being a family comes to a close, I look down the road ahead of us. I can only see so far and I wonder when the "honeymoon period" will be over. I know, despite the twists, turns, rocky roads, & mountainous terrain, I am really going to enjoy this journey. (Um, is it time to adopt more children yet? I'll take a million just like Eli!)