It has begun. Today marks the birthday that begins the busy season of 5/6 of the family birthdays as well as Thanksgiving, Christmas and New Years Eve.
Today we celebrated in subdued pandemic fashion. This year the boys are 8. I still remember the night the doctors/team came into my room and told me it was probably time to take them out.
I also remember with the wisdom of already having a child, I requested one final nights sleep before our world changed from 1 child to 3. Thus in direct part, the boys can only specifically blame me for being exactly 1 day before their father’s birthday as well as awfully close to Thanksgiving some years, as it is in 2020.
I remember thinking as I watched their little little chests struggling to breathe, how someday it would be a distant memory, how I would eventually not feel like my heart lived outside my chest most days. It was so tough leaving those little fellows in their little NICU boxes and driving home. Bug didn’t know it then but she was my reason for tearing myself away. I had her to care for and to love and squeeze when I couldn’t hold the boys. For those who don’t know, they were born at 29 weeks and they were both under 3 pounds. It was a whirlwind.
Today I watched as they woke up before the sun, enraptured by their birthday balloons. They watched too much TV, ate too much sugar and were about as loud and boisterous as usual. My little men. Growing into big men. What a gift it is.
Tomorrow we celebrate the man of the house, coincidentally on Thanksgiving this year. He will insist on at least 4 cups of coffee, at least 1 Monopoly game and will of course downplay that it is his birthday at all.
This year has been an odd one for many of us, yet deep down we still hold fast to our dearest traditions. To celebrate, to enjoy, to sing and blow out candles and give hugs. In these times I am thankful for a “big” family. We are mostly loud and very busy, our house is rarely clean.
It is a house with merry celebrating and glad hearts (most of the time).
I am thankful for many things on this Thanksgiving Eve, my 4 wonderful children are pretty high up on the list. They teach me lessons I didn’t know I needed. They help me stay young at heart.
Given the uncertainty of our world right now I am thankful for a God who is a Father, who loves without expectation but wants absolutely the best of everything for us.
May your heart be thankful in this busy season. Take time to slow down and wonder at the family that you have, the friends who love you and keep celebrating no matter the occasion.
Happy Thanksgiving Eve.