The seconds, minutes, and hours after Asher was born are some of the most painful, yet most beautiful memories ever. Memories I have played over and over in my head countless times since that day. There is not a minute that goes by that I do not picture that beautiful face of his and wonder what he is doing right at that moment.
I loved Asher from the very minute I found out I was pregnant. And with every passing day, I loved that sweet boy more and more. I wasn't sure I could quite possibly love him any more than I already did, until he was born. His tiny little hands and little toes, his sweet little nose and mouth, and his red hair...every part of him just melted my heart. He was beautiful.
The minutes after Asher was born were a bit crazy to say the least, it felt like a whirlwind. He was born totally unexpectedly so Sam had to frantically call our family and tell them to come now. I don't think he even told them what happened, he just managed to say get here now through his tears. A quick phone call was also made to our dear friend and photographer, as well as our pastor.
Sam was able to cut the cord and we watched as our nurse gave sweet Asher a bath in front of us. I think Sam and I were still in shock that Asher was here, so sitting back watching the nurse give him a bath gave us a minute to catch our breath and let everything soak in. She wrapped him up in a blanket and put a tiny hat on his head and gave him to me to hold. Through the tears I held on to that little boy so tight, trying to soak up every part of him, so I would never forget.
Our parents arrived with tear filled eyes. Each of them held their grand baby and gave that little boy nothing but love. He was passed around, hugged, and kissed. It touched my heart to see the love in that room that day, images and feelings I will never forget.
A good friend snuck into the room and took tons of pictures of everyone with Asher. You can see the pain in these pictures, but you can also see the joy and beauty. I cannot thank her enough for these pictures, they are absolutely beautiful, I will treasure them forever.
Our Pastor baptized Asher and prayed a beautiful prayer over our little boy. A prayer that I do not remember the words, I just remember that it was absolutely beautiful and warmed my heart knowing that our baby was resting in the arms of Jesus right at that moment. Thank you Annie and thank you Sean for being a part of our day, we are forever grateful to both of you!
We spent our day being Asher's mommy and daddy. We held him, we kissed him, we rocked him. We took his foot prints, we attempted making sand prints with his tiny feet. We read him stories. We laughed. We cried. We admired every thing about him. We prayed. We took a million pictures. We cuddled. We did nothing but love on him!
One of my favorite moments was me holding Asher, while Sam was sitting beside us reading to him. We brought two special books with us to the hospital: On the night you were born and I'll love you forever. Sam started reading I'll love you forever and when he couldn't read anymore, his mom picked up. And sang,"I'll love you forever. I'll like you for always. As long as I'm living my baby you will be." It was beautiful and brings tears to my eyes just thinking about it. There was not a dry eye in that room.
Our parents said their goodbyes later in the afternoon. It was hard watching them say goodbye and leave, but I am so grateful for the quiet moments we had with just the three of us. We opted not to bring Micah to the hospital. He would have yanked every cord out in about 30 seconds and would have been doing circles around the room. We felt it was best to keep him away from the hospital since he wouldn't understand what was really going on. We got Asher dressed and wrapped him in his prayer shawl. He also had a crochet lei around his neck, a gift from one of the midwives. We talked with our sweet boy and prayed over him. We were given as much time as we needed with Asher and I am so thankful for that.
Around 7pm, we were discharged from the hospital. The hardest moment of my life was leaving Asher in the arms of someone else. It was painful. We left Asher in the arm's of our midwife, who was surrounded by a few nurses. These people are near and dear to my heart, I'm not sure they will ever know or understand how much they mean to me; they are forever part of Asher's story. Walking out of that quiet hospital with empty arms was really hard, a feeling no one will understand unless you too have walked those steps. A feeling I will never forget. A part of me will always be missing.
And when we walked to our car, there was a rainbow off in the distance. Yes, we live in Hawaii and see rainbows all the time, but I still am in awe each time. I never take their meaning or timing lightly. In that moment I felt the sense of it's all going to be okay.
I can honestly say that I have never felt the presence of God as much as I did that day in that labor and delivery room. He was there and where we are weak, He makes us strong. I can fully attest to that. Looking back, I think to myself, how did we do that? How did we make it through that day? There is no other answer, except that we were carried. In the midst of so much sadness and so much chaos, He was there. There was a peace in that hospital room that I will never be able to explain.
Though Asher may be physically gone, he will forever live on in my heart. I am thankful for the promise of heaven and eternity. I am hopeful that I will see my sweet baby boy again one day.