Dear Jackson // Four Months

*fyi taking these photos was next to impossible. Jackson can't sit up by himself yet but is so curious so he moved constantly resulting in him falling over. He spit up twice (hence the changes of clothes and the wet spot on the chair that appears halfway through), cried and then wanted food and just really wanted to eat his toes. These pictures accurately describe four months and I am in love with them.

Dear Jackson,

It's 9:22pm and I am already typing you this letter on Sept 14 rather than the 12th which is when you turned four months. I'm exhausted and honestly want to curl up in bed rather than type this out. I keep thinking, it's okay to miss a month right? I haven't even attempted to take your four month photos so I will put that on the to-do list tomorrow. I want to sleep but I know you'll wake up in an hour or so and wanna feed so is the hour of sleep really worth it when I just feel so groggy waking up? Should I just keep working until you wake up? Or will you wake up in a hour? For you to know and me to find out I guess.

It feels like I've been your momma forever. Four months is such a short amount of time. I can't imagine what life was like without you, what sleep felt like. That is by far my hardest thing about motherhood: my lack of sleep. I miss sleep so much. I can't believe it's been over four months since I slept eight hours straight. Random chunks of sleep just don't compare. But Jackson, I am happy to do it because of you. You are so incredible. You are so little and you don't know when its day or night. You don't know that I want to sleep. I often remind myself in the early morning hours that you have no clue I am missing sleep, you just want food or someone to comfort you.

This past month we have transitioned you to your crib. We started at two and a half months and this whole month plus has been learning to get you to like your nursery, establish a bedtime routine and get you to fall asleep by yourself without me rocking you. At four months you have mastered all of these things and I am thrilled! Yet, staying asleep is the hard part which I hope to type in your next's month letter that we have accomplished and that I have slept a full night! Anyways, this past week around 5am after you ate we were snuggling in the chair. Normally you fall back asleep for a couple more hours but your eyes were open and you were smiling at me. My heart melted as I looked down at you. I asked the Lord if I could freeze this moment. Everything was still, it was still dark outside and you were just looking up at me, loving me and thinking I was the greatest. Sleep didn't seem important in that moment as you gazed up at me smiling. I caved and rocked you around the room a bit making the moment last a bit longer till you closed your eyes and drifted back to sleep. As I placed you back into your crib I told myself to never forget this feeling. The feeling of true love, full dependence and purpose. Jackson, thank you for allowing me to feel so deep, to love so deeply, to cherish you so much and to learn to love you like Jesus. Thank you for giving me such purpose as I fold laundry, change diapers and hold you for hours. Thank you for letting be your momma.

This month you have grown so much.  Weight wise one August 22, you were 12 pounds 12 ounces. Mentally you have made leaps and bounds! You love tummy time and play on your stomach for a good twenty minutes before getting discouraged. You hold your head up high and look all around. When I put you on a play mat you shuffle around and can do a full 360 spin. You can roll over from your stomach to your back and each time you do you have the most adorable look on your face. One that is so confused how you rolled over and then after we reassure you of how great you are at your new skill you smile and are so proud of yourself. You haven't been able to roll from your back to your stomach but we are practicing everyday!

Your hands are open and you play with toys now. You can grab them and feel the different textures. You love grabbing a toy and trying to fit it into your mouth. You really try to fit everything into your mouth including your entire hand. Sometimes I almost think you'll get it. You play so well on your playmat as you grab the toys and try to put them into your mouth, not realizing they are attached- it is so cute to watch you try to figure it out. You are starting to fit in your exersaucer/bouncer. You are so proud of yourself standing up even though at this stage only one foot touches the ground. You are to little to move around in it, but can grab hold of the toys on the outside. You love your independence and being able to "stand" up and play brings you such joy. You still feed every three hours during the day and still random times during the night. You love watching baseball even though the Jays aren't doing to well these days. I can't feed you if the Jays are on. You just love them so much and wanna watch, it is too cute.

You can see so far and you watch us all day every day. You love watching me do dishes as you sit in your chair. You think the loud noises and running water are so interesting. Your daddy and I are so excited to see you in the morning that both of us normally volunteer to greet you when you wake up. Whoever goes into your room in the morning, you smile at them so big, grinning from ear to ear. You almost get hyper as you kick your legs and move your arms at the pure joy of seeing either daddy or me. You are just ecstatic in the mornings and it literally makes Marks and I entire day. Once we see you awake in the monitor the conversation always is "I can get him, nah, I can, no you shower I'll get him." Dad and I really love you but those first few moments in the morning are pure bliss. I hope to never forget them.

Speaking of your Daddy. You love him! Your eyes light up and you just permanently smile at him. You really think the world of your Dad and he thinks the world of you. Watching you both interact makes my momma heart explode. I can't wait for more moments where you can connect. We already talk to you tons about learning to skate, throw a baseball and bounce a basketball. Last week, as we were making lunch and you were in your chair just watching Daddy, he came over and started talking to you. You full out laughed and couldn't stop giggling! We both died in pure joy as it was the first time we ever heard full out belly laughter. I screamed running around the house trying to find my phone (which you will grow up to know I always loose my phone) as I wanted to capture the joy on video for the grandparents and friends to see. We got the end of the laughter and in the past week I have watched that video over a hundred times. Honestly, one day when you are reading this, ask Dad how crazy I am and how many times I watched the video. I am just so in love with you!

Jackson you are such a blessing. Children are blessings and you my son have blessed my life more than I could ever put into words. Some nights are hards, some days are exhausting but I would give up sleep forever to be able to be your momma. I still believe all you need right now is food and love. And I think you are getting a good dosage of both. You have so many people who adore you, who love you and who are praying for you.

But right now I am going through a small worry phase. Yes, some nights I worry about you and the pressure you will one day feel. Your Dad had the opportunity to preach again at the end of August and he was amazing. His spiritual gift is teaching and being able to communicate (something I am just awful at most times). I sat in the back row, as Papa held you as you slept and I just knew God is calling us to continue working in full time ministry. I bought some books to read up on how to parent you right from the start so I don't ruin you. As I pray over your life, I just feel God smiling at me and my worries as He whispers into my heart "Maddie, Jackson is mine." Yes, I need that reminder. You are God's child and He adores you more than I do (which is unfathomable!). I am praying that no matter what God calls you to do or our family to do that you will faithfully do it no matter the cost because Jesus is worth it. Yes Jackson, Jesus is so so worth it. Our time here on earth is so short and we need to make every day count for the glory of God.

OK I am typing way to much. I love you so much and I wonder when you will wake up tonight and if I will get any sleep. Let's sleep OK? Happy four months my handsome baby boy. We are crazy in love with every little part of you.

Your Momma

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