After spending a wonderful yet long Saturday afternoon with my nephew, I get the pleasure of sitting next to him on my couch listening to him snore. As I look at him I can feel my heart growing in my chest and tear welling up in my eyes. How could anything be so perfect? I don't have children of my own, and I imagine this will be the most of my experience for a little while longer. This moment, this feeling, makes me want to tell the world about Jason.
Jason is the only child of my baby brother and the only niece/nephew from a blood relative. I am a firm believer that love is not defined by blood nor is family. I have step siblings who have other nieces and nephews and I have friends who's children I view just the same.
The whole time Jason was in his mom's tummy I couldnt wait to meet him and to spoil him. However, there was a dark cloud of fear that hung over my head. My best friend has a daughter, who was 2ish at the time that Jason was born. I was VERY close with them. Her daughter had a special place in my heart, and we shared a close bond. My fear was, what if I don't love my nephew as much as I do my friend's daughter? What if Jason and I dont have that bond? I was worried about being a horrible aunt to Jason because I had given my special love to someone else.
The week he was born was a week from hell for me. I no longer remember all the bad things that happened. I only remember the feeling of being in the hospital when Jason's mom went in to labor, and thinking "this trumps all that other bad stuff". We knew with Jason being so big and already over cooked, that it was going to be a long night. All other family members went home, but I couldnt. I had to stay... Maybe it was because I didnt want to leave or because I thought my brother needed or because I have always been afraid to miss out on something. No matter the reason I am so glad I did. Although my brother and his girlfriend gave there blessing for everyone to go home, they still needed someone there. My brother needed someone there. At a very young age, not quite an adult himself he was going to be a dad. In those moments it was becoming real to him. While him girlfriend tried to get some sleep, I went and got him food and we talked for a little bit. I believe that night, although we have always been close, we grew even closer because he knew I would never leave.
Jason didnt come into the world until the next day in the early afternoon via c-section. He was stubborn and comfortable. I remember being one of the last people to go into see him when they got the all clear. Remember my fear I mentioned earlier? As I was walking to the room my palms were sweating and my mind was racing. Then I walked into the room and see my baby brother, who my mom often referred to as "built like a brick shit house", holding tiny almost 10lbs Jason. My eyes started to tear and my brother handed my nephew to me. I look into his sweet little angel face and my heart about exploded. It was a feeling I have never felt in my life. It was LOVE, but I didnt know I was capable of loving someone THAT much until I held Jason. It was at that moment my fear went away and I knew we would share our own special bond.
This little boy taught me what to love beyond my own limits felt like, is going to be 5 in the fall. Because of my love for him I have an anatomical heart with marigolds around it tattooed on my arm. Everyone asks me the meaning behind it and I tell them its for my nephew because he is my heart.
My brother, although I may have not though so before Jason was born, was always meant to be a father. He is wonderful with Jason. Jason's parents do a fantastic job at raising a smart, funny, charismatic little boy who loves unconditionally.