That One Day When The Boy With The Heart of Gold Was Born

There was nothing spectacular about October 12, 1995, except it was 10 days before my son was due and he chose that wonderful day to make his appearance! It was also the only time Christopher Jr. did anything early! I did the same thing with him that I did when I was pregnant with my daughter. I walked, ate spicy food (a la Taco Bell), and drank castor oil by the tablespoon until my insides were slippery! I tell you, when you are 9 months pregnant, you are willing to try anything!
When C.J. was born, he was taken to NICU because there were some minor complications with his birth. (I may have had too much castor oil, because he was out of there in a flash!) The nurses had given him a bottle, so trying to nurse him after that was a joke. Looking back, I am so glad it worked out that way, because he had the suction power of a Kirby vacuum cleaner!
When it came time to wean him, he refused to give up his bottle. The day I took it from him, he had no choice in the matter. He was 11 months old, sitting in his car seat, on a trip, probably to the grocery store, when I heard this loud ‘POP’ followed by a weird suction sound. I turned around to see him looking dismayed, face contorted so that I could no longer see his eyeballs. “Give me that bottle, boy”, I say as I grab it from his fat little fingers. The nipple was inverted and sitting at the bottom of the bottle! I threw the bottle out of the moving car, and from that day forward, he used a sippy cup.
He took his time with everything, and was a child of few words. When his sippy cup was empty, he would shake it until someone noticed. It was futile to try and get him to walk early (his sister walked at 10 months). He took his first steps after his first birthday. I had given up trying, and when I wasn’t looking, he stood from his spot on the floor and started walking. As he grew older, he played sports. A natural athlete. His athletic ability was off the charts—until the awful day he was diagnosed with Rheumatic Heart Disease.
When he ran the football he literally floated above the turf. It was beautiful to watch. The basketball world would have had another Steph Curry on its hands had he not been stopped short. Having to give up sports broke his heart, but made room for the gold that sometimes gets him into trouble. Not the bad kind of trouble, but the “I love strays” kind. He loves unconditionally. He gives until he is empty and then gives more. He brought home a young lady once who had a drug addiction and I knew I had to draw the line. “No, Baby, she cannot stay with me. She has to go to a shelter.” He thinks he can love all the bad stuff away. I love that about him. My boy with the heart of gold.

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