This is a few days (well–a few weeks) late, but as my mother always said, “better late than never.” I can hardly believe that Harrison is a year old. The fall season sends memories flooding back to this time last year. The cool weather, the changing leaves, the anticipation of having a baby, bringing Harrison home and those first weeks at home as a family of four. The season of fall has forever changed for us. And I’m thankful for that.
Harrison has not always been easy for us. His first 7 months of live were pretty hard. Actually, they were really crappy. He hardly slept during the day. He would wake up at least 10 times a night. He had trouble falling asleep without being rocked and rocked and rocked. His head was misshapen. And our social lives were nonexistent. It was hard. We felt helpless. And alone (or at least I felt helpless and alone. Or maybe it was the sleeplessness kicking in).
We tried everything to get him to sleep more. Essential oils. Chiropractor. Elevating his crib. Warm room. Cool room. White noise. No white noise. Tylenol (oh the amounts of Tylenol we gave him thinking he was in pain). Reflux medication. Adding cereal. Giving formula. Changing formula. Buying expensive “magic sleep suits”. Swaddling. Not swaddling. Everything. His favorite place to sleep was in the Rock ‘n Play until he started to push himself out of it. Then he would only sleep in his swing (we should have purchased stock in D batteries), until the night I again found him falling half way out.
We were tired. We were exhausted and we are so thankful that we are past that stage. The first 7 months were some of the most challenging days we’ve had in our marriage. Sleep deprivation is no joke.
The saving grace through it all?
A sweet, content, happy, little guy. While he didn’t spend much of his infant days sleeping, he sure did spend them wide awake and content. I’m not sure how we would have made it without this saving grace.
A year later. We’re sleeping all night. Harrison takes naps. And we are so.thankful. Thankful that we’ve been given this amazing little guy to raise. He completes our family in a way I didn’t know possible.
Harrison at 1 year-
Likes: Food. Chasing balls. Chewing on anything squishy. Playing with his brother. Stealing in delight at the firs sight of us or his brother in the morning. Splashing as hard as he can in the bathtub. Clapping. Sidewalk chalk. Swinging on the swing. Playing peek-a-boo.Exploring in the wood chips, grass, dirt, flower beds, etc. Crawling anywhere his brother goes. Pointing. Being thrown in the air by dad. Our phones (agh!).
Dislikes: Getting teeth. Dogs. Lawn mowers. The garbage truck. Having his toys taken away.
Milestones: Walking! He has been taking steps for awhile now, but he is becoming more and more confident with walking. Crawling is his preferred method of transportation.
We’ve caught Harrison saying “Augu” several times. We’re thinking he’s saying “August”. But he’s pretty stubborn with his talking.
He sure loves to explore and get into everything. For awhile I thought he was going to be less active than August. Boy was I wrong about that. He’s just as active with crawling and exploring, but more content doing it on his own terms. I feel like I chase him around all day cleaning up his messes.
We celebrated Harrison’s birthday this past weekend. He was unsure of the “smash” cake. But loved exploring all the new toys he got. We are loving this fall season with two young boys. Trips to the apple orchard, pumpkin donuts, painting pumpkins, and enjoying the crisp air outside.
Harrison Siders–we love you so much, little brother. You’re experiencing childhood while our nation is facing extreme amounts of hate, adversity, division, and fear. I watch the evening news and my heart aches for our nation. For your generation. Harrison–I pray that you know the profound impact your words will have on people’s lives. Use the gift of speech and communication to spread God’s love, redemption and justice. I pray that you are a man of integrity. That you treat all people with dignity and respect–especially women. I pray that you learn how to think critically and are able to acknowledge injustice when you see it, while acknowledging your own privilege. Mostly, I pray that you come to know the love of our Savior. And with that love, you are convicted to love others the way God loves you. I hope and pray that you never loose your sweet, clam, content, “go with the flow” spirit. You are a gift to us and I know you’ll be a gift to so many in the days and years to come.
Harrison Siders Bohle. We. love. you.