Nine years of motherhood and nine years of having Matthew in our lives. I really can't believe how far we've come in nine years. I have documented all of Matthew's life on this blog. It has been such a blessing to look back over the last nine years and read about all of our adventures with "Crazy Matty" and the rest of the Simpson gang. The times I was losing my mind, the times we added a sibling, encountered obstacles such as Matthew's cerebral palsy and OT issues. Seeing how much he has matured. On the days when parenting still gets the best of me, which is MANY, this blog reminds me, time and time again, that there is a light at the end of the tunnel. That babies do eventually sleep through the night, that one day you will change your last poopy diaper, that you will be able to take all three kids to the store without wanting to cry your way through it. The weather today is very much like it was the day our boy came into this world. It has made me nostalgic for that day nine years ago when I thought for certain I would die from the pain of labor. When I realized how things weren't going well due to the doctor and midwife's alarm (and swearing!) as they literally sat on top of me trying to free the baby who had gotten stuck trying to make his way out. Waking up alone and scared, no baby, no husband, and a very blurry memory of them finally getting that baby boy out. Hours of waiting followed, panic growing stronger as time ticked on wondering where my baby was and if something was wrong. I remember when I finally got to hold Matthew, saying to him, "I am your mommy!" I remember thinking his coney, jaundiced face was the cutest thing I have ever seen. I remember thinking that the dream I had, for as long as I could remember, to be a mother, had come true. I have realized though the years of parenting Matthew(and Caroline and Ellie too), that I certainly underestimated parenting and motherhood in every single way. It is the hardest job I have ever had. It is the most rewarding, most demanding, and had revealed many of my deepest flaws to me. Above all, I feel overwhelmingly that I am privileged to be able to shape these little people. I pray that I am doing them justice. Happy Birthday sweet Matty man! We think you are a wonderful boy that is thoughtful and funny, caring and compassionate. We can't wait to see what your bright future holds!!