one year ago today we became parents. parents to a tiny baby boy. a boy who was perfect in every way. we, with his birthmother's approval, named him daxton. we had no idea then, how fitting that name would be now. every time we meet someone new they ask us what his name is and they ask to clarify and then confirm what we already knew - that this name is awesome - just like he is. daxton could never be a broden, a tyler, or an oscar. he's dax. he's strong. he's decided. he's firm. he's intriguing. he's dax.
it was just one year ago that we lived a different life. a life filled with what we wanted to do when we wanted to do it. when we wanted to go out to eat, we went out to eat. when we wanted to sleep late, we slept late. when we wanted to go on a trip, we went on a trip. when we wanted to go to target at 9pm, we went to target at 9pm. when we wanted to run errands for 7 hours, we ran errands for 7 hours. still, regardless of the flexibility being "just marrieds" affords, we never felt complete. we longed for the sleepless nights, the changing of diapers, the mixing of formula, and hearing a baby cry. we longed for a little person to call our child, someone to help build our family, someone to raise with our values and morals.
so, on 11/7/11 at 4:48pm i received a phone call telling me that this sweet precious baby was on his way. it was at that moment that our lives forever changed, and things got incredibly wonderfully amazingly better. the panic set in at that very moment. the reality that our son was actually on his way into our family started to sink in. we had prepared our home and our hearts and now our day to day lives were about to be plunged right in to parenthood.
the first night home was rough, and shortly thereafter will and i both started going to bed around 8pm - which if you know us is something that just does not happen in our household. we were exhausted. however, slowly but surely our sweet boy turned into a sweet sleeper. when its his bed time our angel boy lets us change his diaper, put him in his sleep sack, lay him in his crib, turn on his sleep sheep, turn off his lights, and goes right to night night. sure, he has had a few nights when teeth and earaches made it hard for him to fall asleep, but he is an amazing night time sleeper. as time has progressed, will and i are back to our 2am bed times and working off 4 - 6 hours of sleep.
our little guy was not a huge crier. sure, he'll cry if he wants something - but he is not the kind of guy who is just going to cry for the fun of it. we're generally pretty quick to figure out what is ailing him and get the situation rectified so he'll be at ease. from the time we brought him home his little cries quickly turned into him making some other noises and babbling. then he went to what we've donned as his "roar". he loves to let out a roar when he gets excited or just out of the clear blue, you just never know when you'll get one. sometimes he launches his entire body into the roar, shakes his fists, and tenses up every muscle he owns. it's definitely passionate. (matter of fact, the is doing one right now in his jumperoo.) then, he decided to start saying dada, doggy, boom, hey, hi, and uh oh. he loves chatter and making sounds. we hear him carrying on conversations with himself in his room during "nap time" and he loves to talk in the car.
when dax was even just a tiny baby he was still a mover. he always had his left leg kicking, his hands flailing, and even started rolling over long before i ever thought he possibly could. now our sweet boy belly drags at a quick pace to anything that he's after - mostly - electrical cords, cell phones, remote controls, and any other electronics. he's still king of the jumpers and spends at least an hour a day (at various times) jumping in one of his three jumpers. as of late you can even find him pulling himself up on anything he can get his two hands on. crashing down after his victory clap is a little frightening to him, but he still cannot resist giving himself some rejoicing!
dax started out drinking bottles (and bottles) of formula and moved on to enjoying such things as butternut squash, to sweet potatoes, to green beans, to bananas, and other organic baby foods. however, lately you'll find him loving to eat baked sweet potatoes, whole green beans, chopped cooked carrots, chopped bananas, yogurt (of any flavor), and of course his o's cereal. he amazed us by eating pickled beets, turnip greens, and cheddar crackers. it won't be long until he's having what we're having for dinner. i have to admit i am patiently waiting for him to try curry and pho.
he's a social guy. he loves people (in small batches) and has never met a stranger. he makes people smile. he makes people laugh. he brings people together. he melts people's hearts. he's a charmer and he knows how to turn it on when he wants to. he knows he's silly and he makes sure you know it too. whenever you tell him "no" he looks at you out of the corner of his eye and grins the biggest grin he can muster, knowing that he is irresistible. he also has great friends in his "daags" or "doggee" - which are his two dog sisters. he squeels with excitement when he gets to pet them (gently) or watch them wiggle on the carpet. he loves them both and lights up with pure joy when he sees them run by.
its amazing how this sweet boy has forever changed our lives in the most amazing ways. will and i still (at least once a week) have to talk one another out of just going into his room to peek in on him while he is asleep. we miss him during the night and wish we could just see his sweet face. we love his snuggles when he nuzzles right in your neck and coos before drifting off to slumber. we love those sweet chubby cheeks, the grin with little pearly whites poking out, the dimple, the curly hair, his tender little grasp when he holds your finger or your hand, those ultra long and curled eye lashes, and those adorably tiny feet. we're so in love with him, its a love that we never previously knew. i feel like i just cannot make it clear how much we love him. its an overflowing, awe inspiring, unbelievable kind of love. he makes our lives so full, so complete, so rewarding. we enjoy every minute we have with him and we'll never forget all he went through to find his way to us. we're so eternally grateful to be his parents.
and so, it's with pure happiness that we've arrived at our final statistical post:
it's been twelve months since daxton was born.
it's been twelve months since this sweet boy found his way into our lives.
it's been twelve months since our hearts grew exponentially with a love we never knew.
in this past month, daxton's top two teeth have officially poked through his gums. they are still not protruding down far enough into his grin to be visible on photos where he's smiling, but its just a matter of time until you'll be seeing all four teeth in his grin. every time we see those teeth we comment on how amazingly adorable they are.
as of this past week, daxton is officially pulling himself up now. he does it best in his pack n' play, crib, and on the various baby gates throughout the house. its still pretty shocking to just turn your head and see him standing there. when he does it, he is so proud of himself that he claps and smiles as big as he can. he knows he's done something amazing. to add to the excitement, just yesterday he decided he'd start edging around the inside of the walker and his crib, pulling himself along in a walking motion. oh baby! he is still not sure how to sit down once he's gotten up there, so once he's been standing for about five minutes he begins to cry to hopefully be reminded how to bend those legs and get back down where he has been for the past 11.5 months of his life!
daxton's latest trick is sitting on his knees. it's so funny to see him plunked down on his knees and calves just playing with a toy, figuring out blocks, or working to get his passie back in his mouth. he goes into this position to prepare for standing, and sometimes he just likes to sit this way.
daxton has impressed us with his eating skills lately. we're dicing up the o's cereal with cheddar crackers and he loves to crunch and munch them between his four teeth. when we went out to a restaurant this past month dax amazed us by eating an entire baked sweet potato! we kept giving him another bite, another bite, another bite - and before we knew it all that was left was the skin! he has also eaten greens, ratatouille, shredded cheddar cheese, and pickled beets. i think he's going to be a good eater. we think he's having another growth spurt because he is doing lots of eating and lots of sleeping!
lately daxton has learned to wave bye bye. he loves to flap his right arm up and down waving when you say "bye bye dax!" he has also found a fascination with "uh oh". we say it when he falls down, when he throws something on the ground, or something accidental happens. he's started copying us and saying that phrase over and over again. he loves mimicking and being just like us. he still loves to copy cat you when you wiggle and dance and i recently told him he has more dance skills than daddy. this fella knows how to bust a move! he has also learned how to reward himself for doing great things. whenever we jump for joy, say awesome!, say yay", good job!, or good boy! dax knows he is supposed to clap. so, now whenever he does something brilliant he goes ahead and starts clapping even before we offer praise. man - i love this kid.
it's been twelve months of 2172 diaper changes.
it's been twelve months of 1905 bottles for a total of 71.6 gallons.
it's been twelve months of cuddling, rocking, and loving on our boy.
it's been twelve months of the purest joy you'd ever know.
baby dax, we thank you for the best year of our life and we hope every year just gets better and better in yours. we cannot imagine our lives without you in them. you bring us hope, joy, and love. we wish you a lifetime full of happiness, fond memories, and a heart full of a true and amazing love of Jesus.