Max's birthday party is a celebration of his strength, determination and ability to inspire people. He's an amazing little man and he deserves to be worshipped by everyone who loves him.
But I'm a little bit sad. On the 22nd of March, 2010 I met my little boy and he was perfect in every way (although he looked like a slimy, purple frog). When I held him for the first time, I apologized for comparing him to an amphibian and promised I'd give him the universe. At the time, how could I have known what the next 12 months had in store for us?
I had 10 precious weeks of being a 'normal' mother with a 'normal' son. 10 weeks where I cuddled him all day, despite people telling me I'd regret it later. I've never regretted it. Max hated cuddles after the stroke.
10 weeks where Max and I caught up with friends for coffee. 10 weeks where I indulged in Internet shopping, looking for punk rock baby clothes. In those 10 weeks, the most emotional experience was getting his immunizations.
*please don't berate me for using the word 'normal'. Babies having strokes is not normal
Strategically placed dignity duck
The 2nd of June signaled the end of being a normal mummy. There were no more playdates only medical appointments. I didn't shop for cutsie baby clothes anymore, I shopped online for therapy items. PTs and OTs became the closest friends I had.
have you ever tried finding the perfect sippy cup for a hemiplegic baby? We're currently trialling the sixth one.
I hated going to baby music group, it was impossible not to be jealous of the other babies and their two functioning hands. I hated how they were meeting milestones without hours of therapy. Most of all, I hated their mothers for giving me sympathy eyes.
I hated myself for thinking "this is not the way it was meant to be". It wasn't fair, why him? It's a cruel irony, that the biggest fear I'd previously had, was Max sustaining a brain injury. My biggest fear and it happened when he was only 10 weeks old.
Every dream, I held for Max's future, disintegrated on that day. The dreams became nightmares, full of 'worst case scenarios. I stopped dreaming about his future and started living day to day. It's going to take years before we can truly understand the full extent of his injury.
Max's looming first birthday, is a testament to his courage and strength. He has endured far more pain then an infant ever should. He deserves to be spoilt rotten
For me? It hurts like hell. Almost 12 months ago I held my little boy for the first time and promised I'd protect him forever. I failed.
I love you so much Max