This post is part of a ten-post series I’m sharing about the life and loss of our son, Afton. Click here to read more of Afton’s story.
The first time I felt Afton kick was on a tour bus in Lyon, France. We were driving by the river, all lit up at night – and with two teeny tiny pops, there he was. I smiled and cried because I was in France with my favorite person and our baby was saying hi for the very first time. It was too awesome.
I became obsessed with trying to get Bjork to feel the kicks, but I was never fast enough. It became a routine – we’d lay in bed reading, and every three minutes I’d grab his hand and say: THERE! There he was! Did you feel that? And every time, Afton would get still and quiet. It was a game. That stinker.
Our last “normal” day before the hospital was everything I would have wanted it to be. Bjork and I drove to the studio together – a rare event. We met with our builder to finalize the details of the baby-inspired remodel that was supposed to start in a few days, and we laughed about finishing the remodel before April 26. “Please don’t come early, baby!” I joked easily. I took Sage for a walk around the lake and listened to an audiobook on breastfeeding. (Sweet Afton: your mom is nothing if not a nerd.) Bjork and I worked late, until 8pm, saying outloud how sweet it was to enjoy these last months of having such a flexible schedule before our lives would get changed by the miracle of a newborn. We got dinner at a cheap Mexican restaurant and came back to snuggle on the couch with Sage.
As soon as we sat down, Afton started kicking. I grabbed Bjork’s hand, expecting more of the same shyness, but as soon as I put his hand on my belly, Afton gave a strong, direct kick. Bjork’s eyes popped and we both laughed with wonder. There he was! Introducing himself to his daddy on what would be our last night together at home.
Our last normal day with Afton was just that – normal. Sweet, precious, normal. That’s what I want to leave as my last story, because our normal days with our baby were some of the best days of my life.
“Normal day, let me be aware of the treasure you are. Let me learn from you, love you, bless you before you depart. Let me not pass you by in quest of some rare and perfect tomorrow.” – Mary Jean Irion
Afton – we’re celebrating your life today and every day. I’m so proud to be your mom.