Eric Joseph

My first born…the Golden child (the ongoing joke for a while due to the fact the he was the first boy to carry on the Vivian name)

Eric came into the world on Feb 7, 1999 at 11:42 a.m. After almost a full day in labor and a horrible epidural that slowed everything down he arrived and he was PERFECT!!! The joy I felt at providing the Vivian family a boy & providing my husband a son meant so much to me. All those years ago I seemed to care so much about making others happy so this put me on cloud 9. Eric was a great baby for a first child and set the standard high for our future kids.

Time went quick with him,as he made it pretty simple to be a mom. We truly enjoyed our moments with Eric. Being a Mom was great, scary, fun & trying all at the same time but it was so worth it. I knew some core values that were so important for me to teach him & thankfully Hut had the same values. To start, I made sure that prayers were said every night…bed time would be a definite time where we could spend some “quality” time together before nodding off. I still do this today even though some think it is unnecessary as they are getting older…(I disagree. Respect was another core value that I knew Eric needed to learn…look at people when they talk to you, shake hands, be able to hold a conversation with someone on the phone and most of all, respect ALL PEOPLE! Eric has proven to me time & time again that he is succeeding in the  respect area (besides respecting his siblings of course;)

Sometimes I feel bad… you know the first-born tends to get a bad wrap, always has more responsibility and is expected to be so much more mature than they really need to be. YUP! That is me and unfortunately I do expect all these things from Eric and more. Just Monday of this week I remember yelling at him about his grades. Although they were not terrible there was a bad grade or two for the moment and I was not happy. Normally I am on Skyward at least every other day to check grades and make sure they are not falling behind. Well right now that is not the case and I have chosen to try & not beat myself up over this. Monday night I had Eric’s conference and his teachers were so kind to meet me all at the same time. I have to say they were awesome. Every single one truly seemed to care about Eric the person and not just Eric the student. They cared about Eli, Ella, our family and wanted to help however they could. WOW! How blessed are we!! Another amazing school and awesome teachers supporting our family!

One of the saddest days in Eric’s short life that I can remember is when we sat him down to tell him how sick Eli was. As we were still at Dupont with Eli I had to call my friend Staci to pick Eric up after school. When we walked in the door he greeted us with smile as always and of course said “how was the MRI” ? Words could not be spoken at this point as I think Hut & I were both still numb. As we came around later on in the night we knew we had to tell Eric & Evan both. They saw the tears, heard the phone ringing & could feel the fear that we felt. As Eli went up to get a shower we just let it all out. “Your brother has a very rare disease” I remember the first words from Eric…”Is he going to die” We decided from the beginning to be honest with Eric & Evan about everything so we answered saying that they say it is fatal but we will fight and do everything we can to beat this. The tears flowed freely from them both and then from all of us. Our family of 6…how long will it remain? Our life as we know it is over…the “new normal” is just beginning. Poor Eric…just became a teenager and now is going to grow up quicker than I would ever want…now he will have to deal with questions of life & death that most don’t have to think about at this age. Please God protect them from this sorrow!!!!!

Yes we expected a lot from Eric from the beginning of this but it has always been that way… so when he is in therapy later in life he can’t blame their sickness he can just blame a Mom who always wanted him to be the best he could be from a very early age! Pheww… I mean come on…we all screw up somewhere right? They could all go to therapy for something, I just hope I make this time in our life as “normal ” as I can for as long as I can. As Eric’s Social Studies teacher said as I was walking out of his conference “Does Social Studies really matter Mrs. Vivian?” I could not agree more …what I think he meant is… does this matter right now? and the answer is not really…what matters is how he is doing, the support he has and that Hut & I are here for him when he needs us. Sometimes that is the best that we can give but as long as he knows we are always there then we have succeeded as parents. Love & Trust…that’s all we need.

I can only say that I am truly so proud of the young man who Eric is turning into and I know God has him covered with his Grace through all of this. Eric’s friends, teachers & family that have stepped up to help him get through this are truly a gift.  As they say “It takes a village to raise a child”  and we  are part of an amazing village!!

~ by my4foures on November 22, 2012.

6 Responses to “Eric Joseph”

  1. Thank you for always reminding me to appreciate my children!! It’s so hard to remember this in the middle of all the craziness but every time I read what you write, I remember how precious life is. Your words are always wonderfully written!! And it’s good to know that we’re not the only ones who are extra hard on their first borns! (She’ll be in therapy too some day!) Have a wonderful Thanksgiving with your beautiful family!

  2. Becky – you take my breath away, your writing is so amazing and you are doing an amazing job dealing with this time in your life. Love you all. Aunt Anne

  3. He is an AMAZING kid with a smile and personality that lights up my classroom!! You are a great mom and your children are a reflection of you!! We all adore Eric and he’s going to do BIG THINGS in life, I know that for a FACT!!!! Enjoy the rest of the break with the kids xoxoxox Sra. Ewing.

    • You are so sweet. I love him so much and I wish life was more normal for him right now. I am so lucky he has such great people like yourself that are there for him and truly care. Thank you for that! Xoxo Becky

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