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A True Blessing


“Our House Has Grown By Two Feet” is a sign that hangs in the kitchen of my wife and I. The sign has two tiny foot prints and was given to us for Christmas by my brother Walter and his family. On Christmas Eve morning my wife’s water broke at 6:10 a.m. and I instantly went into panic mode (this is the first time I have admitted to being nervous to be a parent). I got out of bed and grabbed my jacket and keys and was ready to go straight to the hospital. My wife (Lindsay) told me we had plenty of time before going into actual labor. Lindsay and I were not expecting our first born until January 13, but he had other plans. Prior to going to the hospital, Lindsay, myself and her sister went to storage to grab his basinet, newborn size clothes, diapers and other newborn necessities we had anticipated grabbing the weekend after New Year’s. After nearly 21 hours of waiting and anticipating his arrival, Austin Jefferis Cruz entered the world at 12:57 a.m. on Christmas Day. From that moment on, my life has changed and I would not want it any other way. From the second I laid eyes on him, to hearing his first cry, and to present day his first laugh, nothing compared to when he wrapped his innocent little hand around my finger at the hospital. It is a moment I will never forget and I hold near to my heart. That was the first moment I realized that he is depending on his father to keep him safe, become a role model and even his first friend.

The three of us came home two days later and to our surprise, a made bed and Austin’s entire major needs put together for us, courtesy of Lindsay’s family. If I haven’t had a chance to say thank you over the last two months: Thank you!

Since returning home, my wife and I try to stay on a schedule with him; having him bathed, fed and changed by 9 p.m. and “snuggle time” on the couch with him. This usually results in the three of us falling asleep on the couch while watching Friends, The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air and Gorge Lopez reruns.

Before his birth, friends and family members have been telling us, “Enjoy these little moments with him now, because before you know it, he will be grown up and you will not know what happened to the time.” To be honest, I really did not buy into that. I figured we would take it day-to-day and eventually he would be at the “fun age” where he would be mobile and talking and watching cartoons and sports with me. My perspective has changed drastically as my “Little Man” has outgrown his newborn onesies and has started to become alert to his surroundings (making eye contact, laughing and smiling at mommy and me). Time really has escaped me but I will treasure every moment I can with him.

Lindsay has been taking tons of photos of our little Christmas gift, and I am truly grateful for her as she has been the perfect mommy for Austin. She took him to his two month doctor’s appointment recently and was there for him when Austin received multiple shots for vaccinations. She takes care of him and others all day at her daycare job and is a full time mommy when she gets off of work. Lindsay has taken care of 95 percent of Austin’s diaper duties and makes sure he is bundled up when we go out with him. The two of us would be completely lost without her.

Someday Austin will be able to read this on his own (again I can wait until then so no rush) and when he does, I want him to know that he is the greatest Christmas gift we could have ever received. We love you son.



Dennis Cruz is a staff reporter for The Oakdale Leader, The Riverbank News and The Escalon Times. He may be reached at or by calling 847-3021.