Today has been 21 weeks since Gideon was born.
Wow. 21 weeks. Some people have said, "Its already been that long? I can't believe it." Yes. It has been 21 weeks. I have felt every second of those 21 weeks. It has not gone by fast nor has there been a time when the days just glide by me. For most people their daily activities are simple and they do them without thinking. Every second of it is a choice for me; breathe in, breathe out, cry, go eat, go to sleep, go read a book, go make a cake, dont forget to breathe, cry, take a shower, go to the doctor, do laundry, breathe in, breathe out.
I have said this before and I will say it a million more times. I miss Gideon. I love him so much. We miss him with every beat our hearts take. Every beat is one beat closer to being with Him and with Gideon. (I am so excited about seeing Jesus one day!). I see pictures on facebook of my friend's sons and they have begun rolling over and sitting up and saying dada. It reminds me, not that I really need the reminder, of all that I have lost. Of all the moments we will never get with Gideon. I will not see him change or grow up or smile or laugh. It hurts every day that I have no idea what my son would look like today if he was alive. If Gideon had been born alive, he would be almost 5 months old. I can't picture what he would look like. All I can see is the tiny, sweet, beautiful boy I held in my arms 21 weeks ago. Thankfully, I can also, because of the image the Lord gave me, picture Gideon as a grown man. But all of the places in between, I cant see. I wish I could, just for a second, see what he would look like today.
21 weeks ago right now, I was kissing my son's face. I was watching Todd kiss him and hold him. 21 weeks ago.
As the 21 week mark approached, I started thinking about my 21st week of pregnancy. As each week passes, I think about the corresponding week in my pregnancy. The 21st week was a big one for us. Two days before I turned 21 weeks we went to the doctor for the anatomy scan ultrasound. That is the BIG one. Thats the ultrasound where they show you all the baby's body parts and check to make sure if the baby is healthy. And you get to find out the gender! We were so excited. I wanted to know if we were having a boy or a girl!!! Todd and I didnt care either way, we just wanted to know! I remember being so anxious and happy and excited going to my doctors appointment that day. Todd, of course, came with me. So did my mom and dad. They all came into the ultrasound room, and watched as we saw our baby's body. It was miraculous. Todd held my hand the entire time we were getting the ultrasound. The ultrasound tech scanned the baby to make sure all of the parts were there. The baby's arms, and legs and head and body. All good. We got to see Gideon's heart and all 4 chambers! It was, at the time, the most amazing thing I had ever seen. It still ranks pretty high up there. Amazing. We got to see both hemispheres of his brain and his internal organs! How incredible is that! After we found out that the baby was totally healthy, we were completely relieved. Everything looked good! Todd had tears in his eyes and was smiling so big. He was so happy the baby was doing so wonderfully.
The ultrasound tech then told us "Its a boy" and showed us his penis. I was shocked! I remember saying "OH!" and my breath got caught in my throat. I was so ecstatic and surprised. I honestly thought we were having a girl. Like I said before, it didnt matter to me which gender our child was, but I thought he was going to be a girl! We were so excited to get to have a boy!!! Todd and I were almost jumping we were so happy.
I sent my sisters text messages telling them the baby was a boy! Every one of them was so excited too. The first person I called was my grandma. I promised her I would call her first and I did. She was very, very happy the baby was doing well and that we were having a boy!
The next day, I went to visit one of my best friends at work so I could show her the ultrasound pictures and tell her the gender of the baby. She was very happy, though she was secretly hoping for a girl because girl clothes are cuter than boy clothes. haha.
I loved being able to say "my son" or "our son." Knowing that we were having a son was incredibly special to us. We knew our son would make an impact on this world.
At 21 weeks, we finalized his name. We knew his first name would be Gideon. The Lord truly led us to that name. And Gideon is my absolute favorite name for a boy. Todd and I both loved his first name. We decided to go with my maiden name as his middle name. I got the idea from my dad. His middle name is his mom's maiden name. I wanted to name Gideon after my dad, but I am not crazy about my dads first and middle names. So we went with my dad's last name. Which worked out perfectly. So his first and middle name was decided. Our son would be Gideon Zeller Mitchell. How cool is it to have a Z as your middle initial!!!
At 21 weeks, I had really gotten to know Gideon's patterns. I had been able to feel him move for a couple weeks and I had figured out some of what he liked and didn't like. He liked Italian food. A lot. Over the next 3 months I got to know my son so well.
We began praying for our son, not just our child but prayers specific to a having boy.
So today, I am remembering 21 weeks. I am remembering the times that Todd and I got to call Gideon by his name for the first times. I am remembering the feeling of never being that happy before. I am remembering thinking about what my role as a mom to a boy was going to be. I am remembering all the dreams I had for him. I am remembering that soon after 21 weeks Todd started saying "Hey Gideon" to our son in a sweet singsong voice.I am remembering my baby bump. I am remembering seeing him grow and move inside of me every day. I am remembering my cravings. I am remembering Gideon's love for Italian food and his live for music. I am remembering so much about 21 weeks pregnant.
I am also remembering 21 weeks ago. The most beautiful and amazing day of my life and the most heartbreaking pain I have ever felt. This picture is of one of the last times I held my son's hand. I will not hold his hand, that looked so much like mine, again in this life. I will not hold his warm hand after a baseball game, or hold it as he learns how to walk, or give it a kiss when he smashes his finger in the door. But I did hold and caress his cool hand and tell him how much I love him. Compared to a whole life of memories, I have but a few moments, however every one of them is etched into my heart and into my mind, where they will stay.
Thank you Lord for the 21st week of my pregnancy, and for every second that we had with Gideon. Thank you for giving me Yourself, and thank you for gifting us with our son. I do not know what the next 21 weeks will hold, I can barely imagine them. I do know that God will hold us in the palm of his hand as we wander, with Jesus at our side, through this desert.
"As you do not know the path of the wind, or how the body is formed in a mother's womb, so you cannot understand the work of God, the Maker of all things" Ecclesiastes 11:5