Happy Birthday, Groundhog Boy

by Lian on February 2, 2010

Colin's two fave foods in one! Cake and Burgers

Colin's two fave foods in one! Cake and Burgers

My son Colin turns 12 today. And in between making chocolate chip pancakes for his Special Birthday Breakfast, and peanut butter and jelly roll-ups for his Special Birthday Lunch and sliders for his Special Birthday Dinner, I’ll be thinking about the day my little groundhog came into the world 12 years ago.

Seven months into my pregnancy, I went into pre-term labor with Colin, sex then unknown, and spent 8 weeks on bedrest. I went down on Thanksgiving and got up on New Years.  I had to call in all my post-partum favors early, as relatives and friends came to help with 2 year old Brookes. Then, the little groundhog proceeded  to be two weeks late! By the time February 2nd rolled around, I was more than ready to give birth.  My sister Liz, recently retired from her job at Nike and just about to begin our work on Satellite Sisters, was visiting after a two -month trip to Thailand. She was supposed to leave that day, but stuck around once I went into labor. My husband was grateful to have anybody, even Liz, in the delivery room for back-up.  There were some rough hours there– but I pulled through. After literally 3 months of labor, Colin arrived at noon, healthy and sweet. The hospital was not particularly busy that week, and thanks to new legislation signed by then- President Clinton, I didn’t have to leave the hospital hours after giving birth like I did with Brookes. I stayed in my big room, the rain pounding on the windows, for it was an El Nino year here in Southern California, for a delightful 72 hours before heading home to face my very put-out toddler and life with two kids, no help and a workaholic husband.

I have fond memories of those 72 hours  in the hospital.

No, of course I did not make this cake!

No, of course I did not make this cake!

What’s amazing to me is not that Colin is 12. Believe me, there were years where I felt every hour of every day. No, what amazing me is that so much of who Colin is was right there at the beginning. Enthusiastic, curious, observant– those were all qualities he exhibited as a baby. He needed very little sleep then ( about 9 hours a day– when most babies average 12 to 14 hours. Yes, I am still tired from the lack of sleep incurred from 1998 to 2002. ) and he’s able to stay up, reading until the book is done or I force him to turn off the light. He was an early talker and he has not stop talking since.  Colin adored his big brother, despite his big brother’s indifference. The adoration continues, as does the ( faux)  indifference!

One thing is certain:  nobody, nobody in our family, loves their birthday more than Colin. Maybe because his first one was such a special day.

Happy Birthday, Colin.

Embracing my chaos, Lian

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Ann February 3, 2010 at 6:51 AM

What a sweet tribute to Colin! And what a great picture. His face looks almost magical at seeing his cake. Although I had easy pregnancies with both of my boys, I also savored those few precious days in the hospital…especially the second time around!

Christine Drake February 3, 2010 at 5:38 AM

I loved your account of birth day. My 3 yr.old grandson is also a child of a “3 month labor” ; he too radiates joy, enthusiasm, curiosity and unbridled love and affection. How blessed we are! our hearts have so much to smile about.
thanks Lian,
chris from wisconsin

kbradcliffe February 3, 2010 at 4:12 AM

Beautifully said, Lian. Brought tears to my eyes. Happy Birthday, Colin!

Cyndi February 2, 2010 at 7:52 PM

That is a priceless photo! Happy Birthday Colin! I think 12 is a fantastic age.

Okay, so you didn’t make the cake, but you made it possible ; ) – it’s still one that will be hard for him to forget.

Hope you can celebrate your own birth accomplishment – quite the story!

Nashgal February 2, 2010 at 7:06 PM

This was such a sweet post by a mom. So many of the “mommy” bloggers tend to complain about their kids. This made me reflect on qualities I love about my own kids (boy 8 and girl 12). Thanks!

Lisa Paul February 2, 2010 at 5:53 PM

Happy birthday Colin, thanks for sharing it all Lian. My son turns 12 Sept. 16, I am loving it as he gets older. But it is so fun to think about those early days. Lisa

Jennifer February 2, 2010 at 5:41 PM

Happy birthday to Collin! The cake is great and he looks so happy. Hope you are all enjoying this day!

Sue in NJ February 2, 2010 at 4:51 PM

Happy Birthday to Colin (did he see his shadow?) and happy memories of both struggle and success for his mom! It is obvious how proud you are of your sons, and I’m sure they are proud of their accomplished mother too.

KAOP February 2, 2010 at 3:42 PM

It doesn’t matter if you MADE the cake, it was very sweet of your MIL to order it and you to give it to your son, when you knew how much he’d like it!!

Lian February 2, 2010 at 2:18 PM

Let’s be clear. I DID NOT make this cake! I di dnot even order it! My mother-in-law , a fantabulous cake maker, saw this cake at her favorite cake shop. She knew it said “Colin!” So, she ordered it from:

Two Brothers Bakery and Dessert Company located inside of Jane’s Cakes and Chocolate Supply
2331 Honolulu Avenue
Montrose, CA 91020
1-818-957-5447 FAX

I want to give credit where credit is due. Please rememeber my cakemaking attempts– like the sickly orange halloween cake .

Susan in MD February 2, 2010 at 1:17 PM

Happy Birthday Colin! What a lucky boy to have a mom make you such a special cake and all your favorite foods!!!

Anne Goodrich February 2, 2010 at 12:18 PM

Such a great story – thanks for sharing, Lian! And happy birthday, Colin!

Christina February 2, 2010 at 11:29 AM

Great post & picture Lian…Happy Birthday Colin! :-)

Susan February 2, 2010 at 10:39 AM

Very sweet, Lian! Happy Birthday Colin! Today is our 12-year-old, Jack’s 1/2 birthday – he reminded me this morning :) !!

zephyr February 2, 2010 at 10:21 AM

What a wonderful post, Lian!! So very cool, you and your boys.

Diane Gray February 2, 2010 at 9:58 AM

That is a very sweet tribute to your son and a wonderful picture as well. Happy Birth Day to Lian!

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