I’ve always been the sentimental type and I can remember dates and birthdays like nobody’s business. I keep cards, notes, and little trinkets from various different events in my life. I still have birthday cards from my 13th birthday, wedding cards, and movie ticket stubs from my first date with my husband. So naturally I had a box going from the moment I found out I was pregnant with Elliott. It started small, beginning with the first pregnancy test I took, the one where my heart skipped a beat and tears flooded my eyes. Those positive lines appeared so quickly, filling my heart with a newfound love of the life growing inside. Over time it grew holding ultrasounds, the drawing of his diagnosis, videos, baby shower cards, bracelets from the birth, a small muslin blanket that he was wrapped in constantly during his newborn days and a little blue knotted hat worn after his second open heart in Boston.
I know, I know.
The truth though? I was afraid. Right down to my very core despite what I knew, despite what I was told. The competitive side of me took over and it became a mental battle that I was determined to win. I WOULD seek joy and I would choose to live and direct my thoughts in a way that was life giving and not fear based. We decided that regardless of his diagnosis, his life was to be celebrated just like any other. He was alive and growing and perfect and I needed to allow myself to think positive thoughts about his future. The third item, tiny knitted shoes his Grandma made for him. To ease her mind during his first open heart she said she wanted to knit him something while the doctors “knit” his heart… I loved that. He wore them often in the hospital and looking at them now I can’t believe his feet were so tiny! And last was the bracelet he wore shortly after birth with the date and time he was born.