Today my thoughts are about Tony, he just celebrated his 15th birthday. Since all of my blogs have been about our life with type 1, it’s odd to write about something other than. But today my focus is on Tony, celebrating his life. He life was so anticipated. Regarding Type 1 and Tony, he is such a great big brother to Joey, he is always supportive of him, I think he has a pretty good understanding of the disease, and always offers to watch Joey for us, so we can go to dinner, etc. He’s just a great kid.
When Joe and I thought about marriage, my concern was that if we wanted to have kids, it might be a struggle. This being my 2nd marriage, already a mom of two kids in their early twenties, I wanted to be sure I could have another baby before I committed to marriage. After 5 years of marriage, and 5 years of saving for the surgery that was going to make this all possible, the Dr. gave us the OK to start trying. I wasn’t a spring chicken anymore, so I was apprehensive about my chances of getting pregnant. But, by God’s will, within 7 months we were expecting our first little boy together.
Everyone was excited and looking forward to Tony’s birth, even the nurses in the hospital were so excited that a few of them stayed with us, even after their shift was over, just to welcome him into the world. One nurse in particular, a cute little Italian girl, who all day called him Tony, was NOT going anywhere until she laid eyes on him. Back then he was Anthony to us, so her calling him Tony sounded so funny. It was Tony, who in 1st grade, came home from his 1st day of school, and announced that his “new name” was Tony, no more Anthony. It took some family members YEARS to make the change.
I knew on day 2 of Tony’s life, that he was something special. It was the day of his circumcision, they took him, along with Joe, who was not going to let him go through this alone, did the procedure, brought him back to me, and when I took him in my arms he looked at me, started whimpering, with the most concerned look on his face as to say “that was horrible, how could you let them do that to me?” I cried. Joe was upset too, because he just witnessed the barbaric procedure on his little boy. Anyway, I digress, that is a totally different blog, point was that he was communicating with me from day two.
From the time he was born, he was a talker, with crazy stories, like when he was two, he told me that I wasn’t his first Mother. And the time when he said that he had talked to his Grandpa B, who lived in Heaven. He was very Clairvoyant from the beginning. He talked to my dear uncle who passed away unexpectedly, saying that he had come to say “goodbye” to him. There was the visit to the cemetery to visit Grandpa B’s grave, where we had to leave upon arrival, because he was terrified of what he saw there. It took over 6 months to get him back there, and that was after we prayed to God, and Grandpa B, to make the scary beings go away.
Tony always asked us for a “brother or sister my own age.” Since his cousins had siblings close together in age, (remember, Tony’s siblings were more than 20 years older than him) he wanted one too. We started trying for a sibling for him, right after he was born. I remember my friend Heidi telling me that giving your child a sibling was the best gift of all, and that was a gift that we all wanted terribly. We prayed together often, for that brother or sister, until one day in August, we decided it was time to stop trying. Tony was 3 yrs old, I was 42, and it wasn’t happening. So one night he was in bed with us, he said, “Mommy, when are you gonna give me a brother or sister?” I told him that we weren’t going to be blessed with a sibling for him, that God gave us him, and had a different plan for us. This is what he said “can we pray to Grandpa B for a brother or sister?” I said, “Sure, let’s pray to God, and to Grandpa B, one more time,” so that’s what we did. On August 31st, 2000, the day before my son John’s wedding day, I took a pregnancy test, and thanks to God, and Grandpa B, I was pregnant with our precious Joey.
Tony is very talented when it comes to sports. He holds school and track meet records for the Shot Put, a sport he started in 5th grade. He plays AAU basketball, he was on his freshmen basketball team, will play for his high school baseball team, and then there’s football. His football coach has high hopes for him. As long as he is happy, we are happy for him.
Tony brings so much Joy to our lives, with his love for life, family, sports, and friends, but especially for the love of his “brother his own age!”