Christmas came and went without fuss. We had a wonderful time as a little family of three, knowing that very soon our lives would change. Autumn had been told that "after Christmas" Jesse would be here. So as soon as our Elf, Chippey, left again for the North Pole, she started asking, "Is Jesse coming today??" She was a week early on her own so of course we thought Jesse would also be earlier. And since this was my third baby we expected him at least a few weeks early. We were ready! Mentally and physically. But as the weeks drew closer and closer to my due date (January 23,) we were starting to wonder if he wasn't just too content to make an appearance! The week before my due date I told the doctors that if he wasn't born by his due date, we'd induce. I had another ultrasound done a few weeks before his due date and they estimated he would be around 9 lbs if he went full term. I was determined not have a C-section so I didn't want to risk him getting bigger than that. So we scheduled the induction a day before his due date.
It was a long day. We got there at 5am and Jesse was born at 3:20 pm. And due to some nurses who weren't paying close attention, he ended up with a double whammy of the epidural and I just got the edge taken off. So he slept for 2 days! He dropped weight quickly and just in the past three weeks (he's 2 1/2 months old now!) has gotten back up to his birth weight. He's been tested, poked and prodded to make sure that his slow/low weight gain isn't anything to worry about. All is well and he's just a tiny guy. A beautiful, sweet, amazing tiny guy. Here is a picture of our SON, Jesse Allen Parks:
We have had a wonderful two months with him, aside from worrying about his weight. As you can see, Autumn is THRILLED with her baby brother:
We had him dedicated at church yesterday. It was an emotional but beautiful morning! I wanted to share the letter that we wrote for him.
Dear, sweet boy. We weren't sure how to begin this letter. We've written two before. Both very different. For two amazing girls. Both very different. And now we get to write one for you, our SON!
Isaiah 66:9a from the New Century Version reads:
'"...I will not cause pain without allowing something new to be born," says the Lord.'
You came into our lives on the heels of a sad time. You are our Rainbow Baby. **A Rainbow Baby is a baby born after the loss of a child. Just as a beautiful and bright rainbow follows a storm and gives hope of things getting better, the Rainbow is more appreciated, having just experienced the storm in comparison.
There is an understanding that the beauty of a rainbow does not negate the ravages of the storm. When a rainbow appears, it doesn't mean the storm never happened, or that you are not still dealing with the aftermath. What it means is that something beautiful and full of light has appeared. Storm clouds might still be in the distance as the family continues to cope with the loss, but something colorful and bright has emerged from the darkness and misery.**
Without our rain, we may never have seen our rainbow. You, Jesse, are that colorful something. You are already so bright, and strong, and full of LIFE! You have come into our lives and made it extraordinary!
Your name means "gift of God." Your daddy, sister, and I are so thankful that God has gifted you to us. And we three are committed to loving you and sharing our wonderful Jesus with you! He will get you through some hard times if you let him.
You have a very big extended family and they all love you tremendously. You have an even bigger church family, and they love you too! But you also have a very big God and He loves you most of all. Never doubt that he always has your best interests. Even when you can't see the big picture, He is in control and He will make it work out. Be faithful. Be kind and loving to others (especially your momma and sister!). Love God with all your heart, soul, mind, and strength as we will teach you to do. May you be a man of character, trustworthy and truthful. But most importantly, be a man of God. Allow Him to work in you. To mold you into the best Jesse Allen Parks you can be.
You are our son and we love you, Always, Mommy and Daddy
We are so thankful to God for this miracle. And I want to thank each of you who has followed this blog. This will officially be my last post. I have another blog that I started years ago and may continue writing with that one, but for now we're going to enjoy the blessings and look for more rainbows through any future storms.
**a dear friend of ours first mentioned the term "Rainbow Baby" to us, and this was the definitions I found and rearranged**