Ah, week fifty-one...yep, and now we enter in the final week of his first year of life. This post is a little different because we have a guest blogger...Jake Saylor, you saw him on TV a few years back...very handsome and very witty (you know, he did come up with the "Get In (GI) My Belly" post title...oh, so witty). So, the look back on the week will be short and sweet. So, what did week fifty-one bring...well, it brought the meds back (ah, we love the meds)...we have seen a HUGE difference in him and he is drinking his milk (still a formula/whole milk mix, but he is drinking it)! So, the meds have a purpose and we are okay with it. We know that he won't be on them forever. He loves swings and the sand (to eat) at the park...he is totally going to be one of those filthy, little boys and we love it (well, I love it and Jake is getting use to the idea of it). We enjoyed another trip to the zoo...which started well and ended not so well (fits and screaming because I took away his sno-cone (thank you, Mother)). He doesn't love petting the goats, but he loves to crawl around with them...much to the horror of the other mothers watching me...I am sure they were just waiting for me to pull out a bottle of Koolaid for him. He loves to hear himself scream and I know the rest of the people we are around love to hear him scream as well...remember, people express themselves in many different ways and screaming is his art. Oh, and for the walking...let's just say we will have a really cute, crawling cat at Halloween...for sure. He continues to be very sweet and so cute. We are so blessed!
And now for the much anticipated (and very, very long awaited) guest post...
Daddy’s memories of Hugh’s first year.
I first have to say that the guest blogger role is pretty intimidating. Hugh – when you read this years from now, don’t compare this to mommy’s awesome weekly blog posts.
I want to capture some of my favorite memories of life with Hugh. This has been an incredible year, but my memories start before Hugh was actually born…
Jenn telling me she was pregnant: I’ll never forget this because this was a failed husband moment for me. My dad was at the house and we were doing some yard work. Jenn came outside and whispered that she had taken a pregnancy test and that it was positive. Here’s where I failed – instead of instant excitement, I was reserved and didn’t want to get my hopes up. That’s what we call a lack of trust in God (not the last time that’s been a struggle for me). My wife helped me see my sin…she’s good like that…and God was so good to bless us with our boy.
Doctor visits: I wanted to be at every doctor visit so that I could experience every step of the pregnancy (if I don’t do this for future Saylor babies – please children, don’t feel slighted!). The sonogram visit was a highlight – the first time we saw our baby and watched his heart beat was incredible. I stood there in awe and a warm feeling rushed over me as I realized that pea-sized shape with a beating heart was my child - how amazing is the God of the universe. The ultrasound visit was even better. My excitement for baby Saylor grew with every trip to the doc. In fact, every time I drove by St. Joseph’s hospital, I would imagine the day that we would drive there to have our child.
Life with Hugh: watching his birth and holding him for the first time will forever be a highlight of my life (even if the birth didn’t go quite as outlined in our well-crafted, much thought-out, detailed birth plan). Having him sleep on my chest in those early weeks was awesome. Now the only way to get him to cuddle on me is if I hold him while vacuuming (he hates the vacuum) or I take him out of the car when he’s asleep. Oh, how quickly the independence develops. I’ll never forget the first few months of taking him in the car. His piercing screams – or as Jenn put it, his dying kitty cries - are burned into my memory. Thank God that He’s calmed Hubey’s heart for car rides. I seriously thought we’d never enjoy a peaceful car ride again. I love how Hugh lights up and gets excited to see me when I come home – the truth is I feel the same way whenever I see him after being away. Jenn has been awesome to build me up to our son – she’s an amazing wife and mother. The first times Hugh smiled and laughed were so special. I try very hard to get this boy to laugh each day – one of my favorite things is to hear him laugh hysterically. I also like our current “who can growl or yell louder” contests – especially when they end with him laughing. I’m sure a day is coming when I will regret having reinforced this growling/yelling behavior. Oh well. I’ve given this boy 90% of the baths he’s taken in his first year of life and I’ve loved them all – well, except the two times when he pooped in the bath. Those were gross. But the vast majority of baths have been fun and it’s awesome to see his love for the water. I look forward to many fun times of swimming in our future. I also put him to bed most nights and very much look forward to our rocking chair time. We pray together every night and I sing to him some of my favorite songs – “Jesus Loves Me” (one my grandmother sang to me as a boy), “Amazing Grace,” “Silent Night” and “O Holy Night” (because Christmas songs really should be played year-round), and “Come Thou Fount.” While this is done primarily to help him take his bottle and fall asleep, it rarely works. It usually ends up in Hugh grabbing my nose, me biting his fingers, him laughing, me putting him in his crib and Jenn saying “wow – really sounds like you helped him fall asleep.” Priceless. The trips we’ve taken with Hugh also have been highlights – Tucson, Flagstaff, Alaska. I love to travel, so sharing these experiences with my son has been a great joy. I’m excited to take him more places and have more travel experiences. From playing chase around the house and reading books to him, to taking walks and watching him play with leaves (he has a special love for trees), I have so enjoyed every minute with this boy. It’s also been so special to watch him love and be loved by our families and friends. Hugh doesn’t realize it yet, but he is blessed beyond words by his family and friends.
There have been so many good memories from year one and I wish I had written them all down in the moment. I am so excited for the years to come and for the much more life we have to live with Hugh. We know this boy truly belongs to God and we strive to rely on His word, as well as the strength and mercy He shows us, to raise this child. I thank and praise God for His goodness in blessing us with our boy and in using parenthood to sanctify and draw us closer to Him.
Thank you guest blogger for a wonderful post. Thank you all for your prayers! We pray you all are doing well.