When my daughter was born I bought a book called, “One Line A Day.” It is a five year memory book and the intention of the book is to write one sentence daily. Every day for 5 years I wrote a sentence about my daughter. Things we did, funny things she said and all of her milestones…it is all documented in this little book. I now have a book full of everyday, regular moments of my daughter. This little book is one of my most prized possessions.
When I was pregnant with Oscar, I bought the same book for him.
My first entry was on October 6, 2018, the day he was born.
But I struggled breast feeding, I saw a lactation consultant several times over the first few weeks and Oscar had regular weight checks with our doctor as well. I was exhausted and stressed, but I still wrote. Then he started having seizures, we later learned of his diagnosis and our days continued to be filled with appointments.
So that is what I wrote about, because that is all we were doing back then.
What a strange memory book.
I did write in it daily. At least for a little while. Eventually the appointments started to spread out and I became aware of how difficult it was to find something to write about. So when I would reflect on that day and what Oscar had done or accomplished it was a struggle to come up with even one sentence. This was really disheartening. So I stopped writing in his book. In fact I didn’t write in his book for almost a year.
What was I supposed to write?
That we went to an appointment that day? That you struggle to eat? That we did your home therapy with the same goals? That you are still really quiet?
What was I supposed to say?
It was a struggle. It hurt. So I stopped.
Then of course I felt guilty because Olivia has this book filled with all of her childhood memories and Oscar doesn’t.
Over the last couple of months I have noticed that Oscar does something new almost everyday. He now can drink from a proper straw… that is something I could write in my book. He points at himself when we say “Oscar”… there is another thing I could write. He now climbs stairs, plays with cars, and tries to jump. He loves books, “Happy Birthday” seems to be his new favorite song, and he loves to create his own “music” too. What he is able to do is very different from other three year olds, but nonetheless worthy of documentation.
Has his learning curve just rapidly progressed? Or is it that I have just improved my ability to notice all of his abilities?
Either way, on his third birthday I decided to put his book back on my nightstand and I set a pen beside it.
I have started writing in his book again.