My son officially turned one-year-old a few days ago. On the one hand, I cannot believe he is already a year old. But on the other, it feels like this was the longest year of my life.
From the very beginning, starting with a 77-hour labor, we experienced challenges with Camilo. We were absolutely relieved and blessed when he finally entered this world after such an enduring labor, but that was just the beginning of our struggles. Next it was acid reflux starting at six-weeks-old, then the emergence of food intolerances at eight-weeks-old; and resulting from both of those struggles was his complete and utter hatred for his car seat, stroller and baby carrier. We were damn near immobile half a year.
And when most babies start to get the hang of sleeping, around three months old, Camilo refused to give me more than 1-2 hour stretches at a time (and that lasted until he was nine-months-old when we finally decided to make some major changes to his sleeping routines and habits). Because of these challenges, the first nine months of Camilo's life were difficult for our family. We were happy and of course loved him more than anything, but as new parents we struggled a lot, and couldn't understand why we were experiencing so much hardship—what seemed to be much more than what most new parent experience. We were definitely in survival mode.
As we enter into Camilo's second year of life, I am happy to report that on most nights, he is sleeping incredibly well and in his own crib! I was able to get his food intolerances under control by following the AutoImmune Protocol for a solid six months, then slowly reintroduced foods back into my diet. I am able to eat everything now, except for dairy and soy. It has been life-changing to have Camilo's food intolerances under control and for him to be sleeping well. He enjoys the stroller and baby carrier now, too. And for the most part, can hold it together in the car if he's fed and has a few toys on hand.
There was definitely a point during the first (hardest) nine months of Camilo's life that I wasn't sure I could see the light at the end of the tunnel. It sure is good to have caught a glimpse of that light and followed it. Seeing him develop these last few weeks in particular has been absolutely amazing. I can literally see the transformation from infant to toddler. He's walking and talking, and doing all kinds of amazing things like trying to put on his own shoes, dancing and engaging in imaginative play.
Being a momma is absolutely the hardest thing I have ever done, but it is also the most rewarding. When I look at him, I am in awe that my husband and I created him. I am in awe of his personality, his humor, his beauty. Thank you, Camilo, for choosing me to be your momma. Happy Birthday, my son!