I can't believe I am even writing this post-- my baby is a year old. A whole year has flown by since he barged into our lives unannounced on that beloved Saturday last May. I thought I was having a baby at the end of June and if I used his older brother as a marker, I thought I was having a baby after my due date-- I was seriously planning to be in the hospital for our anniversary, which is June 26th. But instead, I woke up at 6am on MAY 21st to my water breaking, sending us quickly down the road to welcoming our Jack into the world.
His early birth was easily tolerated because he was absolutely perfect and healthy despite his early arrival, and my mom was able to come for 10 days to help with the transition. The next bump was thrush which almost killed me- I can still remember writhing in pain during each feeding, just soldiering through, because I was determined that my tiny man be breast fed. Before I blinked that too had passed and I was starring into the eyes of a white haired doc (while my hubs was out of town) as he told me that he would need to put my baby under anesthesia and cut him open because of a hernia and that it was kind of a big deal and so it would need to be done right away, so if I could please be at Children's Healthcare of Atlanta at 6am on Monday. GULP. But once again, it was easy, breezy, and after a night in the hospital and more of our money than I want to mention, Jack was once again good to go. That is until Christmas... when he developed RSV while we were in Texas, which called for an emergency room visit and lots of medicine and x-rays, among other things, as well as the end of breast feeding. It was a pretty torturous few days, watching our baby struggle to breathe and holding a mask over his face for medicine while he screamed and fought tooth and nail several times a day. But again, it was only a few days, before he turned the corner on that sickness. After all that, he seemed to think that waking every 2-3 hours through the night was kosher and welcomed and before too long I was losing my mind. Even as a newborn, he only woke up once, usually between 3-4am so to find myself back at square one was rather precarious. It was a rough patch for Mommy. To put it lightly. But with a short-lived sleep bootcamp, baby boy started sleeping 12 hour stints (AT NINE MONTHS OLD) and it's been smooth sailing ever since!
Jack's 12 month stats:
Weight: 22.4 lbs (49th precentile)
Height: 29.5 in (48th precentile)
Head: 18.8 in (80th precentile)
But no amount of fear, money, or sleepless night could ever hold a candle to the amount of love you have brought to our hearts, the blessing you have been to our family, and the joy you are in our lives. And so now we find ourselves with a one year old-- a precious baby man who is absolutely the cutest, besets, most wonderfulest baby EVER!
Like I mentioned before, Jack sleeps between 11-12 hours at night, with two naps during the day. He eats 3 meals a day, and is already transitioning to milk in a cup during the day, and only bottles of formula when he wakes up and right before bed. AND when this can of formula is gone, it's gone. The end. But I don't think Jack will even notice as he does prefer his big boy cup of milk-- because naturally he is a big boy, just like Max and Gabe :) For food, he still does some "baby food" meaning pureed, but likes finger food and will eat anything we give him from our table. At this point I've tried almost everything, except for nuts and the "choking hazard" foods, and we've discovered no allergies, yay! (We're three for three in that department!) At a year old, Jack wear some 12 month clothes, but those will only last a few moments more, and 18 month clothes are just perfect. He has 6 teeth already through (4 on top, 2 on bottom) with two more popping through as we speak. He is just starting to say words, he does "mama" and "dada" occasionally, he's done "ball" a couple times, and he made the sounds for "Gabe" on Friday after Gabe had said it several times. But Jack knows a LOT-- I can tell him to look at something or go to something or perform certain tricks and he's all over it! But let's be honest, between me, Chad, Gabe, and Max, I'm not sure the boy has been given ample chance to get any words out :)
Jack is very active and all over the place- he can crawl faster than a speeding bullet and pulls up on anything, even if there's nothing to hold on to. He cruises around furniture to get exactly where he wants, and his number one thing to chase is balls. We're wondering if we're going to have another athlete as that's all he wants to play with and he loves throwing. Lucky for us, he's still our little lovey dovey baby. He gives kisses at any request, loves being hugged, prefers to be held and I unashamedly would like to note that he is the biggest mama's boy ever! He prefers me ALL of the time, and when I was holding baby Molly last weekend the little man lost if like he's never lost it before. And despite my disappointment of having to hand her back to Danielle, I love that my Jack loves me like that. My arms get tired, but you would be impressed by the tasks I can perform with a baby in my arms. And it's really helping me regain muscle tone and definition. Jack loves to laugh and is always watching everything that goes on. He has picked up on when/ how to laugh when anyone else laughs and has the funniest fake laugh. Anytime Gabe or Max walk into a room, Jack stops to laugh and if they give him attention, talk to him, or hug on him, he cackles. Jack is such a sweet, fun, lovable little boy. I'd clone him 50 times if I could.
This year has been so fun- besides the "big events" (such as surgeries and such) I don't remember feeling any angst over the process-- adding him to our family was pretty easy and uneventful, and I have loved the opportunity to be home with him and Max as they grow and change and learn. Loving on them and their little hearts is by far the most important and the most wonderful thing God has given me to do. Their Daddy and I just love this role we've been called to and could not be more grateful for our boys if we tried. Our little house is full and chaotic and loud and there are always balls to be found under every piece of furniture, but it's the best!
Happy Birthday to our baby boy-- you are so loved by us and your Heavenly Father-- we pray that you find your worth in Him and His plan for you and that you shine your little light and that great big smile for all the world to see, so that they may see your good deeds and praise your Father in Heaven.
We love you Jack Henry Bowman-- you made our year!