My sweet, darling baby, do you know I almost lost you? Do you know how close it was? I watched your tiny body fight for every breath, hour after hour, day after day. I listened to your hoarse cry, and I cried with you. You couldn't sleep, and I rocked you through the night.
Do you know I studied the machines, diligently watching the numbers and following the lines that tracked your infant life? Do you know you were wrapped up in my arms when, suddenly, they stopped?
You won't remember my desperate call for help and the frantic rush to save your life. You were gone when they took your body from my arms and worked to bring back life. You didn't see me crumble on a cold, hospital hall floor and sob with indescribable grief. You can't know the cautious fire of hope that warmed me when I heard your faint cry once again.
Because I almost lost you, I will never be the same. I am changed. I am broken. I am new.
Because I almost lost you, I'm scared to leave you alone. I want to watch you sleep, listen to you breathe and see the constant movement of your chest. I know, now, how fragile life can be. I have seen how suddenly it can end. I am afraid.
Because I almost lost you, I never want to let you go. I want to hold you in my arms, feel your warmth and get lost in the joy of having you close to me.
Because I almost lost you, I will put down my screen and engage with you. I will look into your eyes, return your smile and listen to the babbling sounds of your voice. I will not waste our time together.
Because I almost lost you, I will take a million pictures. I won't wait for major life moments and special occasions. I will keepsake your everyday adventures, your sticky face and dirty hands.
Because I almost lost you, every day is now a gift, something precious to be treasured and enjoyed. I will play with you, sing to you and snuggle you. I want to make memories that will last our lifetimes and beyond.
Because I almost lost you, I desperately want to protect you from every danger, every germ, every pain. I want to keep you safe from everyone and everything, but I can't.
Because I didn't lose you, I have to let you live. I have to let you go. I have to let you grow. I have to let you fall, pick yourself up again and learn from your mistakes. I have to let you cry so you will know the sweetness of laughter.
Because I didn't lose you, I will be there when you fall. I will be there when you win. I will be there in between. I will be your shoulder to cry on, and I will cheer the loudest when you succeed.
Because I didn't lose you, I will be more grateful, more compassionate, more alive. I will live kinder, love harder and laugh longer. I will listen with more understanding. I will serve with a more cheerful heart.
Because I almost lost you, I will cry more than ever before. Because I didn't lose you, most of those tears will be tears of joy. There were children that didn't leave the hospital that day. I will honor them by making the most of this precious gift.
Our beautiful, healthy baby girl became ill, for the first time, six days before Christmas. Two days later, something internal obstructed her airway and she was unable to breathe. I wish to express my incalculable gratitude to the medical professionals whose quick response and capable hands, saved her life. She was released to come home on the afternoon of December 24th, just in time to celebrate her first Christmas with her family.
Photography generously provided by Poppies & Posies Photography.