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Honoring Alex- My grief and joy as I support my son grow into a man.

Alex and Mama. He gave the best hugs.

I was trying to write a different blog today but my thoughts keep trailing back to my immediate heaviness. Today is graduation. My oldest graduated high school today.

And I am a mess.

Alex Our delivery was hard. About a week after his due date, doctors initiated labor so my contractions would begin. After 2 days in labor, Alex just wasn’t progressing properly, I began to run a fever, his heart rate dropped and about 2am, the doctors asked me if I would consider an emergency c-section. I remember appreciating them asking for my thoughts and at the same time felt the question was a bit rhetorical. I mean how else do you get him out? I had attended all the proper lessons on breathing, pushing, and self care but none of those classes prepared me for the c-section. The medications made my body shake constantly so when my fragile gift finally arrived, I could barely hold him. Not quite the dream birth I imagined. They brought him to me after they cleaned him up- this little foreign creature- and I felt overwhelmed with the responsibility of raising him perfectly. I would be the perfect mom with the perfect family. I put his little hand in mine. I looked at his delicate hand with curiosity. I couldn’t, didn’t understand how he would bless me. We enjoyed each other. He was my little buddy, snot, poop, and all. When I picked him up from preschool, he screamed with joy, “MAMA!!” He was moody when good experiences ended too early. And I did not handle those times perfectly… There were a lot of things that did not go perfectly in his life. Unfortunately. But, today, I’m choosing to remember him hollering, in his little boy voice, “MAMA!” as I watch him walk across his graduation stage. I’ll say my tender goodbye to the cuddles he gave me as I read to him at night. I’ll say my tender goodbye to the times I was able to remove his pain with a kiss. I’ll say my tender goodbye to the moments he ran into my arms. I’ll say my tender goodbye to hearing him sing at the top of his voice, “Rejoice” (pronounced “bejoice”) in the backseat of my car. I’ll say my tender goodbye to seeing him hold the hand of his brother as he walked with him in the woods. Good bye my precious little boy. Welcome to your future. I will be your forever encourager and supporter.

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