Time doesn't stop. The world doesn't stop spinning, even when it feels like the universe is upside down. God continues to bless our lives in unimaginable ways, every single day. Life is still bittersweet in so many ways, and it may be like this for the rest of my life. That makes sense in a way, since a piece of me will always be missing.
Despite the gaping hole in our hearts, we have so many reasons to be happy right now. We had a great Christmas with the girls here, and we had multiple Christmas celebrations with different groups of family. I spent most of those celebrations breathing through and timing contractions, but even that didn't take away from the joy of the season. I think we all had a rough spot Christmas morning, grieving the loss of our little man, but we had so many blessings to be thankful for that it tempered the grief a bit. Those sweet girls I am lucky enough to call my daughters are growing up so quickly. They are such incredible young ladies now, and I am so proud of them. I am reminded daily of my blessings... All four of them.
After keeping us all on our toes since the preterm labor scare and hospital stay in November, Carter decided he was quite comfortable staying put for a little while. I had constant contractions for weeks after going off all of the medications, but things would eventually slow down and stall out. I think I had the longest labor ever, but it was all worth it in the end.
We welcomed Carter William to the world on January 6th via c-section. We had some issues with the cord wrapping towards the end of my labor, and we all agreed it was necessary to get him out as quickly as possible. The surgery may have been a blessing after all, as he ended up weighing 8 lbs. 10 oz. at birth. He was a big boy, and he somehow manages to keep getting bigger every day. He's such an easygoing and happy baby! As long as he's fed, he's happy. And he manages to always be fed. :)
The hardest part, maybe for all of us, has been the inevitable comparisons to Holden. I love remembering Holden in all things, because one of my biggest fears is that he'll be forgotten. But I also need to remember that Carter is his own person. I need to remember to be thankful for that, for the gift of each of my children. Despite everything we've lost, we are still blessed beyond belief. God is good, all the time!
As proof of that, this is Carter. He joins big sisters Kaitlyn and Rylie, and big brother Holden. We are in love.
(The picture is courtesy of our amazingly talented friend, Ren Morrison. More to come soon. :)