Happy Birthday Elijah!
May 9, 2008. I can't really recall what I was doing that day. It was a Friday and the day before graduation so I am left to assume I was wrapped up in the festivities and a full day of work. I have no great memory of anything significant that day so I truly can't recall it. Little did I know...
Sara would be admitted to the hospital to be induced because the baby inside her was feared to not be growing. I don't know how long her labor was. I don't even know the exact time she delivered. I recall being told it was some time in the afternoon. All the while, I would have been diligently working away, completely obvlivious to the happenings in a hospital 15 minutes away. Little did I know this birthmother would have a labor coach who used to work for our business years prior. Little did I know that labor coach was someone I had shared with in bible study, someone who had heard me offer up prayer requests of my desire to be a mother. Little did I know that even though I had no idea what was taking place, that labor coach would be witnessing the birth of a child whom Sara would call "Riley" and whom I would later call "son."
He would enter this world weighing just 4 lbs 11 oz in what I'm told were a scary few moments because he wasn't breathing. After intibation he quickly found his lungs but not before being taken to NICU to be checked out. Little did I know a NICU nurse would be tenderly giving this baby boy his first bath. She knew he was being placed for adoption and as she washed his tiny body she prayed over him and his life. Little did I know that very nurse was someone I'd attended church with for years. Little did I know that very nurse who gave this little boy his first bath was my best friend's roommate in college. Little did I know that even from his birth, prayers were being prayed over him by godly people who were with him in his first hours, despite the fact that I was still unaware he even existed.
The only memory I have of that "time" was two days later on Mother's Day when I sat in church with an aching heart, fighting back tears and hiding the emptiness I felt because I couldn't stand and be recognized as a mother. Little did I know my son had already been born, we just had yet to meet or know one another.
May 9, 2008. I wasn't there that day. I didn't experience the labor pains, but I felt the pains of God shaping and molding my heart to prepare me to be a mother. I wasn't growing physically, but I was being stretched spiritually, trusting in God's faithfulness. I didn't feel him kick in my womb, but I was battling the emotions waging war inside me. I didn't have a due date, but I waited expectantly. I didn't experience those moments of panic when a tiny life was without breath, but there were moments where God took my own breath away as I waited and prayed. I didn't give him his first bath, but I was already bathing him in prayer. I wasn't the first to call his name, but even as I was calling on the name of the Lord, Creator God was forming him and planning all the days of his life.
It was 4 years ago today and little did I know then, I now know the plan God had. I didn't give him life, but I thank God for his life. He was not knit together in my womb, but he has been interwoven into the depths of my heart.
He is my sandy-blonde-haired, brown-eyed handsome little man that providentially looks like he belongs right in the family!
He is my always-on-the-go, full-of-energy, non-stop, just-like-his-mama active boy.
He is a melt-your-heart-gentleman giving compliments and saying "I love you" clear out of the blue.
He is full of mischief and ready to test the limits at a moment's notice (or without any warning at all).
He is also full of joy and usually bounds out of bed with a smile on his face.
He is creative and imaginative as he escapes to his world of make believe.
He is at peace when he is outdoors, no matter what the weather or temperature.
He is our little boy and today we celebrate him!
Happy 4th Birthday Elijah Riley!
A Mother's Prayer