A 5th Birthday!

Tomorrow he will be 5, my first born.

These are the first words I wrote about him once he was here, on this side.

It has been four months since baby Theo was born and I'm starting to find remains of who I was before my whole world changed. I know that there are moms who hop right in after their baby is born and are cruising around town the first week home, feeling change but not feeling terribly overwhelmed by the newbie. Not me. I'll fess up right here, up until about a month ago I felt like my head was on backwards. I had no earthly idea what to do with Theo once we got home from the hospital so I leaned hard & heavy on my instincts and luckily for Theo and me, his daddy was just as excited to do the same. The three of us spent weeks of barely getting out of our pj's, taking long naps and walking around the house. Some days we were even brave enough to sit on the porch. Theo and I spent many mornings in bed snuggling and gazing into each others eyes until one or both of us fell back into a sweet sleep. At the time, I felt slightly embarrassed by my complete lack of baby knowledge & my fear of leaving the house. Now, looking back, I believe that what I did was the right thing all along. I spent weeks in bed with my baby, skin to skin, watching his chest rise and fall as his little belly filled with my milk. The little heart that beat in my belly for nine months was now beating against my heart, a new bond to form. Now four months later, wherever I am, I look down at him looking up at me and feel like I've known those big beautiful blue eyes forever. Sometimes it's as if I've just been born too.

{5 days old}

{20 months old, 10 months post sagittal craniosynostosis surgery.  Photo by Lashley Rhodes}

Since those first words we've survived a major neurosurgery.  They also tell us he has a murmurous heart, and that's okay with me.  We've survived so much scariness that those early days of feeling afraid to venture out to our front porch make me laugh a little now.

Five years later, I can look back and see it all in my mind's eye.  I can feel all of it with my heart.  The good days, the bad days, the still days, the boisterous days.   This 5 year old is dapper, serious, swell.  Yesterday I asked him what makes him happy these days.  He tells me pizza, playing with his friends, building Legos, playing t-ball, and my family.  But most of all boats and cars, engines, motors and dual exhaust.

Swell, indeed.

Happy Birthday, Theo!  The day you came into my life you changed me for the better, forever.  Here's to hoping that all your dreams and wishes this 5th year of your life come true.  Love you so.


  1. happy birthday sweet theo! and happy birth day mama :)

  2. Hi Katie! Thank you for the kind words of encouragement you left on my blog earlier today. I couldn't help but hop over to your blog and I'm so glad that I did. I wish Theo a very happy birthday and am so glad that you are able to celebrate this day with great joy. May there be many more wonderful days to celebrate :) deb

    1. Thanks, Deb. Looking very forward to visiting your blog again.

  3. Happy birthday to your beautiful boy Katie!! Dual exhaust, eh? Priceless. Enjoy this special time with your family and have a great weekend..

    (heading to legofest? we bought tix but with the kids being sick the past 4 days, it's a big iffy now :( )

    1. Oh and I love your new blog and blog name!!!!

    2. Thanks, MJ. The new change feels refreshing!

    3. No Legofest for us this year. Theo doesn't even know about it or else he'd absolutely flip. ;)

  4. Half a decade?! Happy Birthday to Theo and to the mom that was born on his birthday!

  5. Happy happy high five birthday Theo! FIVE years - where does the time go?

  6. happy birthday to both of you.

    oh those scary first moments when you realize this is like nothing else you've ever experienced in your life.

    you have one beautiful boy there.

  7. wow. wow.
    what a beauty he is.
    thank you for sharing mama! what a lot you have been through.

  8. oh! this is sweet. my firstborn {and only} son is about to turn one. i'll be sad when he turns five, because then he won't be a baby anymore... though he will always be MY baby.

    i really like your blog! your photos AND your writing. so glad you stopped by mine so i could discover yours!