Wednesday, August 7, 2013

For My Special Four Year Old!

Today is a special day!  Four years ago, Jay and I held Luke in our arms for the very first time.  He was a pip-squeak...a 7lbs 2oz bundle of love!

When Luke was born, his six sibling ranged from age 6 to 16.  It had been quite a while since there had been a newborn in the house!

In fact, I call Luke our 'bonus baby' because I had thought that stage of our life was over.  Ellie had started school the previous September. I was nervous about having a new child. I found myself, for the first time in 15 years, with no little ones at home.  Some people celebrate that day!

I was grieving!  So much of my life had been centered around babies and toddlers for so long that to not have anyone home was a really hard transition.  And I wasn't just sad..I felt lost.  Maybe it sounds stupid, but I had this overwhelming feeling that, now that my kids were all in school, that I was just waiting to die.

I had lost my purpose!

In life, change happens and I began to adjust.  I started working part time for my parents and found a new routine.  I had one morning a week when I went to Mass and then met with friends for a couple of hours.  I got to go grocery shopping by myself!

Just when I started to get comfortable with my 'new life'........God threw me a curve ball!

...and our life changed again!

It was the week before Christmas when I realized I was a little late.  I was a shocked.  I was a little nervous about telling Jay.  My plan was to wait until after we put up our Christmas tree.  Putting up our tree tends to be a less than inspiring moment traditionally.  There are no angels singing about the beauty of our family harmony, that's for sure.  With kids that love to sing, other kids that hate singing, and multiple kids in a small can get a little ugly.

I figured that if the tree trimming went badly, I would wait a couple of days to tell Jay about the chance we were adding another song lover...or this chaos!

But God beat me to the punch.  The morning before we got the tree, Jay hugged me spontaneously and asked if I ever regretted that we didn't have more children.  "Well, Honey,...actually" and I didn't have to say anymore.  Mr. impatient ran out to get a pregnancy test right away and it confirmed what I already knew!

The funny thing was that both of us had dreams that we had a baby boy in the couple of weeks prior to taking the test!  Jay's dream even had us naming the baby Arthur, after my grandfather.  (We ended up using Arthur as a middle name for Luke.)

News of a new baby was met with lots of excitement...even from the teenagers.  I wasn't sure how the older kids would react.  Teenagers are tough to read....and it had been a long time since we had a baby!

Luke changed the dynamics of our family in ways that were such a blessing!  The kids all circled around this new little baby with such love and devoted attention!  Seeing these big, manly teenagers cuddle a little baby in their arms is such a beautiful experience!  They couldn't wait to teach him how to play baseball and basketball!  (Luke was still a wobbly walker but he could dribble a basketball and swing a bat!)
Our family then...

sleeping brothers


Luke with his big sisters!  Ellie was soooo excited to be a big sister for the first time!

 Luke gave the teenagers a reason to want to be home.  They didn't want to miss all his 'firsts' and they wanted him to grow up knowing them well.  Luke was a special 'glue' that kept our family together during those tumultuous teenage years!  That was a gift!

Luke is so full of love and excitement!  He is such a sweet little guy who is definitely, "all boy"!  He is rough and tumble and loves to wrestle with his older brothers.  Luke loves trucks, his sandbox, play-do, and legos!  (Especially when he is playing trucks in his sandbox, trucks with his play-do, and building trucks with his legos!)  He also loves to follow Daddy around and build things and fix things....cutest.thing.ever!

As rough and tumble as he is, he still says to me often, "Let's snuggle, Mommy!" and "You need to hug me with both hands."  It makes my heart melt!

He is such a great big brother!  Luke and Kate are so close!

I can't believe my little boy is four!  I'm so proud of him!

I took a pic of Luke last night after he fell asleep....his last night as a 3 year old!(sigh)

Happy 4th Birthday, Luke!  We all love you very, very much!