Thursday morning I was getting ready to leave for work, gathering my stuff in the kitchen.
“Daddy,” Aiden called from the living room. “Daddy. Daddy. Daddy sit. Daddy sit.”
He was sitting on one of the dining room chairs and patting the spot next to him. I sat down and folded my hands. He did the same and looked at me with a smile. He had just turned two years old at the beginning of the month.
As I drove to work, I thought about his birth. Carter was an emergency C-section and I was unable to be in the room. Aiden was different, a scheduled procedure, and I had a chance to be at Val’s side. They completed a second C-section procedure and started cleaning him off. I watched from across the surgical suite.
They hooked him to an oxygen monitor. His blood oxygen levels started normal and, gradually, dropped. The nurses called in a NICU doctor for consultation. She arrived, watched the monitor, listened to his lungs, and said they were sending him to the NICU. He had fluid in his lungs and stomach, the product of not having it squeezed out during labor.
In a moment, our second son had ended up in the NICU, just like our first.
Carter and Aiden both recovered from their challenging deliveries. I took Aiden Christmas shopping with me today and, as he grows, I’m always struck by the passage of time. In this season where we focus on giving, we can get caught up in the rush and forget about what truly matters.
We are blessed to have each other, our families, and the chance to chase our dreams and make a difference. As you go through this week, this last mad rush to get things done for Thursday, make sure you take the time to enjoy it. Remember the hard times and celebrate the blessings, the small victories, and the opportunity to do it all again tomorrow.