When I started 31 for 21, I thought I would use this month to reflect on Ben’s first year. The Blog Hop prompt for this weekend is “If I knew then what I know now.”
Ben is almost 15 months old. Where to start?
If I knew I was going to pump for a whole year, I would have bought a hands free pumping bra.
If I knew Ben was NOT going to need heart surgery before he turned one, I would have worried less.
If I knew that I would only hear congratulations and love for my sweet boy from friends and strangers, I would have spent less time thinking about how to defend him.
If I knew how quickly that first year would go, I would have shut the computer more and spent more time with all three of my kids.
If I had known the dozen local families, online community and resources available to me, I would not have felt so lonely.
I think back on the last year and I think about all the things I did wrong. I let Corrie and Evan watch way too much TV. I spent a lot of time online. I neglected my home. I didn’t stimulate Ben enough. I didn’t put his hip helpers on as much as I should have. I wasn’t patient with my family.
And I try to give myself a break. Honestly, it was a shock when Ben was born with Down syndrome … even though the risk (according to the quad screen) was 1 in 19. I didn’t do any research beforehand; I just figured that we would cross that bridge when we came to it.
So then, when we did cross that bridge, I felt a lot of fear and worry. I held Ben in my arms and felt protective. I felt like this little baby needed me to shield him from all that life was going to bring.
Little did I know how amazing Ben would be. How his smile would light up a room. How his brother and sister would adore him. How our family, church and friends near and far would delight in him.
Little did I know that he would be my easiest baby. He would sleep through the night at one month. He would drive with me from home to preschool to soccer practice to doctor’s appointments with (mostly) a good attitude. He would be a champion snuggler.