I am a mother of two.
I have written countless posts about Cassidy… and quite a few posts about both Cass and Cade. But I don’t believe I have given Cade the attention he so deserves. Three of my favorite posts about him come to mind: His amazing birth story, how he grabbed the flag in flag football, and his precious nighttime wish. I really don’t share enough about my boy. I have thought long and hard about this, because each time I share a story about Cassidy-Cade lingers in the background. He has equal amounts of love and attention in our home and in my mama heart.
He knows that.
As each child in every family has a different story, so too does ours.
My motherhood experience with each kid is much like going on two different trips…
My first child’s trip was one of those trips you dream about your entire life… prepare for it for years in your heart and your mind and your home.
But when it finally happens? Everything turns into your greatest nightmare. Everything that was mapped out in your plans and in your itinerary was blown to smithereens, and you are left still piecing every part together. You have survived it, and now you are reflecting on all the blessings threaded through the fearful years of angst and turmoil-
And all the ways God pulled us through.
We have finally landed back home where we are safe and on solid ground once again. Redefining our new life with a sense of gratitude and mistrust. Trauma does that. Constantly re-living the madness and the twists and turns of it all… and as life often does, moments jolt my memory and I reflect on that time once again. Things come up that force me into explanations of the past and the blurry vision of that long endured trip comes crashing back to now.
There’s a sense of pride in telling the story, only because of how it all ended. Victory over long hard war is sweet like that. Especially with a child I have loved more intensely than anything in this world. A child I spent so many desperate nights with, that as soldiers often do in combat- we melted into this powerful union that fiercely fought long and hard for survival.
Those eight years of my life, of her life, our life… will always be treasured as God’s finest work.
In me. In her. In us.
With my second child…
The trip was completely different. The take off was swift and intense, with an answer to prayer. I was still on the other catastrophic trip with Cassidy, while embarking on this one with Cade- so the tainted window of the plane was my source of perception.
Was Cade as sick as Cass?
Did Cade cry every single night, all night for his first year?
Did Cade choke every night with aspirated reflux?
Did I constantly sleep with him on my chest upright so he wouldn’t choke? (All the while having Cassidy by my side too.)
Did Cade struggle with terrifying asthma attacks in the middle of every night?
Did Cade also have RSV?
His asthma was different than Cassidy’s. Albuteral treatments made a difference, most of the time. It cleared his little lungs out well. Those middle of the night episodes were horrifying, as I would anticipate the episode with sheer panic. We never did figure the cause or treatment for them. But for the most part, he was your ‘typical asthmatic’- unlike Cass. He was your typical reflux baby- Unlike Cass.
He was treatable.
It’s as though God gave me Cade to see the other side of one child’s suffering, while living in the dark with the other. And when you experience the victory so sweet each time you shake with that earth-shattering jolt, it puts one piece of your heart back in place. Had I not held that critical peace in place, I’m not sure I would have made it. My second baby slowly emerged with strength and health, through each passing test and desperate tear.
When I see my boy grow into this beautiful force of health and love, I can’t help but embrace the gift every single day and reflect and dance in the light of his living. I watch my boy thrive with his friends, academics, sports, and most importantly *his-much-too-honorable-character-for-an-8-year-old* that literally brings me to tears.
I bask in the goodness and the glory of his health, his strength, and his talents. And deep within, I celebrate over and over again the trip that continues to be an enormous success, despite it’s tumultuous start. I swell with pride and peaceful fulfillment with each and every day I wake to live another God given moment of this life with him.
And each time I get to look into his eyes and feel that passionate connection with my boy, I discover over and over again that there’s no bond quite like the love of a mother and her son.
Oh, my beloved children…
I am surely a mother of two. And the experience of each is uniquely and profoundly Divine.