Tuesday, April 8, 2014

Shepherd Lincoln: Our First Year

One night, a very, very long time ago, two young kids were sitting on the bench in front of house. There was a young boy who had walked over to hang out with a young girl and they decided it was nice enough outside to sit and talk.

As they were talking, the subject of children came up and the young girl said, "I want to name my first girl Lauriana. I always wish my parents had used my middle name as my first name, instead of Megan." The boy looked at the girl, smiled, and replied, "I like the name Megan. It suites you... I've always thought my first son would be named Shepherd."

"Why?" Megan asked. " Bryan....It's not because you love German Shepherd dogs...right?"

"No!" Bryan laughed. "Because, I want my son to be a leader. To know others will look up to him and that it's an important job. I want him to help others find their way. To be a light and a guide."

"Well, if we get married and have a son, we'll name him Shepherd."

"Sounds good. If we get married and have a daughter, we'll name her Lauriana."



Before your father and I met, before we fell in love, before we dreamed about our future kids' names, you were planned. You were always on the horizon and you were destined to be ours. Before Bryan and I got our lives together, before we married each other and bought our house, you were on our hearts. We knew you would come. You were foretold to us from the very beginning. God nestled you right in our hearts, He prepared us to have you, to hold you, to love you and raise you.

He knew the giggles we would share, He knew your first words. He knew the struggles we could face as mother and child. He saw the love and strength that would come from it. He knew how close our family of three would become.

I doubted for a long time, my boy. I was angry at God. How could He give me such a desire to have you and to have Lauriana and years went by with nothing. Finally, in the beginning of 2012, I gave up. I told God I couldn't bare the sadness. I couldn't hold onto any potential children anymore. I needed to let go.

On September 5, 2012 I found out I was pregnant. My immediate instinct was that it was a boy, that it was our Shepherd. It was a miracle. I was not supposed to be pregnant. It was not supposed to be possible... but there you were.

Week later it was confirmed in front of our family that you were a boy.

We were so happy. So blessed. And while the longing for Lauriana was still there, we were so happy to have our Shepherd boy. 

We had a bit of a rocky start, you and I, but luckily, we made it through and you were born. 

You have the best personality. Always happy, unless you are hungry. You love your daddy, you love your Papa, you moderately tolerate me. 

The first year of your life has been full of the highest highs and the lowest lows for me. You have pushed me and stretched me more than anything else in my life. You have shown me my strength and a whole new level of love. Love I have never experienced. Love I don't know how to show you or give you properly. I'm not equipped with the tools, because my childhood was different. 

But I will do anything for you. I will learn any skill, read any book, right any wrong, fix my flaws, counsel with anyone I can to grow you into a smart, capable, wonderful young man. I will give up my dreams for yours to become reality. I will put you first. I will love you more than I was loved. I will give you more than I was given. I will teach you and learn from you all the days I have left. 

You are the light of my beautiful life, kid. When things get hard. When I feel the clouds roll in, I hold you and things become clear. A weight lifts and I breathe again. You are my joy. 

Your daddy and I, we adore you. You won't remember, but even now as we counsel you to make better decisions, to not bite, to not hit us with your beloved golf clubs, we giggle behind your back because you are so cute. So strong. So decisive. We pretend we aren't, but we are putty in your hands, Bud. Hopefully you don't catch on....

But for your own sake we pretend so we can mold you into a good kid. A good man. A man of God.

I love you, Shepherd Lincoln. I pray that I do right by you every day. 




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