Tuesday, January 12, 2010

25 years ago….

I gave birth to my first son, Kevin. Where has the time gone? It is hard to believe that the first baby I ever had is now 1/4 century old.

Kevin was due on December 30th and I was slightly hoping to have the new year’s baby with him. But he chose to remain inside for another 13 days and emerged into our world a day before his daddy’s birthday. It was a hard labor, I pushed for 4 hours straight and finally he was born with the aid of forceps. Back in those days a very acceptable birthing tool. Poor baby had a cone head for the first few days. He also had a head of amazing “orange” colored hair. I remember being wheeled to my room and passing some nurses in the hall and they said to me “oh are you the mom with the new little red head? His hair is gorgeous!”

Kevin was my experimental baby. Being my first born I was determined to be all natural with him.Read to him in the womb, played soothing music for him in utero that later we used to help him sleep.  Nursed him on demand, made my own baby food, co-slept, carried him around in a snuggly (no slings back then that I knew of), and his first birthday cake was made from the La Leche League Whole Foods for the Whole Family cookbook – a pumpkin cake with crumb topping – no sugar laden icing for this boy.  This sugar free lifestyle lasted until his second Easter when he was given a chocolate bunny from his grandma. All my grand schemes went out the door from that moment on.

Kevin was an inquisitive child, who spoke early, walked on his first birthday, was fascinated with books and reading and taught himself to read by the age of 3. I remember his first interest in letters and the sounds they made – at 18 months! He was constantly asking me what words said, what letters meant and he’s the one that put the connection together that there were sounds associated with the letters.

Kevin was the reason I discovered homeschooling. By the time he was old enough for school I sent him off like a diligent mom. I didn’t know I had an option. He hated kindergarten. he had spent three years hanging out with me at various preschools and daycares I worked at and he told me kindergarten was just like preschool. They don’t even know how to read!  We made it through K and 1st grade and then I found out about homeschooling. By then the damage had been done to my son though. He had lost his love for learning and  his desire to write. it took another 7 years before he once again realized he could be creative. Sad that it took that long.

We had many challenges with Kevin. He was stubborn, opinionated, highly intelligent and thus too smart for his own good most of the time. We totally exploited him at 14 and made him the webmaster of a Web design business that fed our family for 2 years. But it was hard working with a rebellious teen and all his moods.

By 17 he thought he knew everything and moved out on his own. I was busy with 3 other children by this time, and though I regretted having this strained relationship I knew he was up for any challenge that faced him.

Now at 25 he is a productive member of the US Air force. and we are very proud of how he has turned out. He left Guam saying he would never come back or call. But he does call on occasion, and if we call him is always willing to chat.

He’s an amazing young man with a lot of potential. I believe he will go far in life.

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