(*Before you were born I was told that you had Edward’s Syndrome (Trisomy 18.) I was upset as your middle name was supposed to be Edward and after that moment it seemed cruel. I had gone to Albany and New York City to talk with specialists about the condition and had extensive testing done. Children with Edward’s Syndrome often die during utero, birth, or within the first year of life. I was given 2 options and both options were morbid; I opted to keep you in my belly for as long as possible and ride it out for the long haul. About 2 months prior to your due date I went to a routine visit and during the 3D scan the doctor said that the fluid around your brain had filled in and looked pretty good. I brushed the doctor off, you had a diagnosis. I knew your fate. I booked a flight to California and met with some doctors on a military base and figured out my birth plan.*)
You came into this world hard and fast, so fast that the epidural was null. You were bright red, wrinkly, and had no visual deformities. There wasn’t a single thing wrong with you…you were healthy and had no signs of any chromosomal abnormalities.
However, you had a penis. I’d never dealt with a penis when it comes to child rearing. It was terrifying. I’ve since come to terms with having a child with a penis… sometimes I giggle when I revisit my thoughts about a baby with a penis. In retrospect a tween with a penis is WAY more concerning than an infant. You’ve taught me that you can injure your penis, and balls, in a variety of ways among other things.
I was set up for failure as I had high expectations that you would be like your oldest sister who was a boarderline savant. It took me a long time to figure out that your sister was advanced and you were my ‘textbook’ kid. You walked when the books said you would, you talked when the books said you would, you played the way the books said you would. BUT you were potty trained early, near your second birthday. That is EPIC in the mom world and I’m very thankful that you weren’t textbook in that area. Time carried on and you were a textbook student as well, I couldn’t be more proud.
You became your own person, you liked things a certain way, you were great when it came to motor skills. While you’re sensitive and sometimes shy you can also be boisterous and annoying. Boychild, you have this uncanny desire to make me proud all the time. You are loyal and forgiving when sometimes you shouldn’t be, especially after I’ve lashed out. Make no mistake, you are a pain in my ass but you’re my favorite pain in the ass. HA! I thought your sister taught me patience, boy was I wrong. YOU DID.
You can assemble and disable all the things! You have a knack for motors and how things work, it’s awesome because I can count on you to fix just about anything that needs any type of handyman service. In fact you just taught your sister how to use a ratchet the other day and that’s pretty cool. As you get older your impulsive and argumentative nature is slowly diminishing, thank God. You are learning to be a man, responsible and thoughtful. You will make an excellent husband someday as you have so many sisters in your life. Husband makes sure you know how to treat a lady by showing you positive ways to interact with me and your sisters. Keep shining, my star. I love you.