|On his first Easter|
When we did our gender reveal party and I cut that blue cake, I COULD NOT have been more surprised. A boy?? A BOY?? Did not see it coming! I couldn't imagine how it would be to have a boy! I feel like his young life so far has been rather full of surprises! He was supposed to be a scheduled c-section on May 31st -- a full week before his due date. I almost wrote it in the baby book! But as time passed and I never grew bigger than I was at 28 weeks, my doctor was concerned that he was perhaps not growing either. So on May 9th just before 36 weeks, I went in to have him.
Chippy, I will never, ever forget that day. I walked into the hospital, not knowing what we'd face, but resting in God's grace and trusting his goodness. He who knit you together in my inward parts was sustaining your little life -- I could tell that something was wrong, you weren't moving as much as you had been even just a few weeks before. You seemed to be resting, just tiny kicks here and there. I lay there during the operation, waiting for a flurry of activity and my baby being whisked away to medical treatment, but instead heard a cry, and Josh saying, "oh, he's little! He's so LITTLE!" In just minutes you were snuggled up to my face. You were ok. Just small. The Lord had protected your life, sustaining you all the way, even though I was no longer supplying just what you needed to grow.
You had BLONDE hair! My teeny 4 pound 5 ounce blonde hair boy was a blondie! I still can't get over it when I see your chubby cherub face with your huge blue eyes and blonde hair. You couldn't be cuter! Your smile is so winning -- with a little dimple on your cheek and those four gleaming white Chicklet teeth. When you lean your head back and chuckle you can see your sweet fat chins and all your teeth at the same time and it seriously COULD NOT be more adorable!
And you still surprise me because although in many ways you are so much like your sister -- pretty happy and fun, loving to play outside and read books, easy to get a response out of, ready to laugh and ready to snuggle -- sometimes you do something that is just YOU. Like figure out toys all by yourself, and manipulate your pacifier, and crawl like a speed demon to something you think about and STILL wake up (and wake up and wake up) at night! You are awesome at entertaining yourself, even though you would much rather have everyone at least in the same room as you (or better yet, watching you proudly). You still take a morning nap at church during Sunday school! You beat Sissy on that by about 6 months! You have been a pretty great eater, and able to feed yourself from a pretty young age. When I sneak you some avocado, though, you fish it out of your mouth immediately with a look on your face that says "VILE WEED!" like Newman on Seinfeld.
You love to sing and bop when you hear music. You go nuts when we turn on Laurie Berkner -- singing and bopping like crazy and getting as close to the TV as possible! I'm always impressed when I see you play. What are you thinking about? You consider what you are holding. You turn pages, take objects out and put them in containers, push buttons, and move parts with extremely nimble fingers. You pretend to draw like Sissy, with her markers, with her magna-doodle. You pretend to cook, you stir and stir, and even pretend to eat play food making tasting noises!
You hate getting dressed. You hate getting your diaper changed. You do NOT like me to keep you from throwing your food. You have strong opinions about these things. You love baths! You love pouring cups of water. You love taking bites of our food. You love snuggling in bed with Mommy and Daddy and giving hugs and being held and played with. You love to wave and say hi to people and pictures, mirrors, and animals at the zoo. Sometimes with both little hands.
Chip Neisler, you are a GIFT. A precious, amazing, surprising gift from the Lord. He is so so good to lend you to our family for a season. We praise him for your first year of life, and celebrate the Creator and Sustainer of all things by celebrating your birthday. May your life be lived to the praise of His glory!