8 years ago today, a precious baby boy decided it was time to enter this world 9 weeks early, weighing only 2 lbs. 14 oz. He's had a lot to deal with in those 8 years, but still makes me smile, and usually scream, everyday! Dreyson is an amazing kid, funny, kind, and determined!
When I think back over these 8 years, I am a little saddened in all that he has been through. On the other hand, I look at how these things have helped shape who he is, and am thankful for the positives that have developed in him because of them. I remember being scared to death, that Tuesday morning when they told me that they had to take him out, NOW! Allen wasn't even at the hospital when they decided that, and they informed me they didn't have time to wait on him to get there. All ended up ok. Allen made it in time, Dreyson was pretty healthy considering his prematurity and size. Now that I know Dreyson, I understand that he entered this world on his own time, not anyone else's and that so fits his personality!!
After spending a month in the NICU, we were able to bring Dreyson home at 3 lbs 5 oz. It was really interesting watching him develop during that early time because he should have still been in the oven. He did really well health wise in the beginning, but soon developed asthma. He has spent time in the hospital almost every winter with pneumonia, but has always been a big boy about it all.
Dreyson was very independent and outgoing from the beginning. He was especially close to his Daddy and to his Aunt Chris and Grandma. (I think he would have taken any of them over me!) Unless his daddy was at work, he was right there wherever his dad was. Then the first deployment came. Dreyson was hugely impacted by his daddy's absence. My little daredevil turned into a little boy who was scared of everything. I think that he just lost his sense of security once his daddy deployed. He was so small, at only 2 1/2, but would proudly tell everybody, that his daddy went to fight the bad guys.
Most of Dreyson's life he has had to deal with deployments, and now injuries. He doesn't remember what his dad was like before, and this saddens me. However, he still has such a love for his dad, and maybe it's a blessing that he doesn't know him any other way. He looks out for his dad and does an amazing job of taking care of him. I counted up today how many birthdays have come and gone without his dad here to celebrate, and today makes number 4. Half of his birthdays have been celebrated without his dad here. And so many people do not recognize the sacrifices kids and families make on behalf of the United States.
Today I can look back and see how all of this has helped Dreyson to grow. He has an empathy for people that are hurting that is incredible. He knows what a true hero is. He knows that his daddy helped make this world a safer place by his selfless service to our great nation. But, most importantly, he knows that no matter where his daddy is in this world, he is never far from his heart!
Happy Birthday Dreyson Malachi, or as your dad would say, "Happy Birthday Skeek!!"