As I type this post in the last few hours of 2008, I think about all the people who would look at this year and wish it had never happened. The state of our country (and our planet for that matter) is pretty bad although we’ve elected a man to office who I believe can lead us down a better path. Even so, people have lost their jobs and their homes, their life savings and with those things, their dignity as well. But I don’t want to talk about the doom and gloom.
The year 2008 started on a gloomy day, a day when Andrew was not even yet 4 weeks of existance. His heart had barely just begun beating and only those who were told directly would have ever suspected that he was growing there inside me. And yet grow he did. I believe the first 8 months of this year were the longest 8 months of my life, going from the agonizing hope that an ultrasound would show a living baby on January 2, to wondering when the morning sickness would end, then wondering if everything was okay when it did. Then there was the anxiety and excitement of hearing the heart beat for the first time, my giddiness of seeing my belly grow even when no one else could tell, the excitement of finding out the gender and the thrill of showing enough that people started to whisper with excitement. Then there was more worry. Is he kicking frequently enough? Why am I having contractions now when it’s too early? Is he getting to big?
There were swollen feet which turned into swollen legs and arms and an extra 50+ pounds of weight on my body. My feet grew a shoe size and became so swollen that I had to cut socks just to make them fit on my feet.
And then when I thought I could stand it no longer. It was time.
Thirteen hours of labor and out came my precious baby boy. Of course at the time I didn’t know what to do with him.
But I learned.
And he has been quite an adventure.
So don’t say 2008 was all that bad. No, not everyone had something like the experience of having a child. But I’m sure we can all find something SOMETHING over the past year that was good, SOMETHING to be thankful for. Can’t we? There’s no use looking ahead to a new year if you can’t look back and be grateful for even one tiny aspect of our lives. Two thousand eight may be ending but for us it carried with it the greatest of all beginnings.