Thursday, February 13, 2014

sweet child of mine

So, my dear Margot Jane. Tomorrow is your birthday. I can't bring myself to say what every mama says on this birthday (especially their first child's), which is that I can't believe you're a whole year old. I'm writing you this letter so you know what's on my heart today... and maybe someday, if and when you're blessed with a baby of your own, you'll know a bit why this day is so special to me. 

This day last year, your Noni was with me and dada in Philadelphia. Today (the 13th) is actually her birthday and it was my due date, so Noni was impatiently waiting for you to make your arrival so we could all meet you already! I knew you would come in your own time, so I was a little more patient. But so excited! I knew your time was coming soon. Noni and Dada had me walking around and around, eating spicy food, and eagerly asking if I felt any contractions yet. We went to church, as it was Ash Wednesday. And finally, as the day drew to a close, Noni, a bit disappointed, decided we should go out for fish 'n chips for dinner. It was snowing that evening, so we laughed and tried to avoid icy puddles as we made our way to a local pub. I'm sure we made quite a spectacle there- covered in snow, ashes, and me with my huge pregnant belly.

We made our way home and Noni decided to save the birthday cake I had made- banana with cream cheese icing- for later. Only, I went into labor that night and so we never did eat it on her birthday! I labored quietly in the early morning hours, the pale snowy light pouring into the windows. On Valentine's Day, at 4:03 pm, you made your big debut! And then we all feasted on a healthy dinner of pepperoni pizza (which I don't normally like, but dang me if it wasn't the BEST pizza in the world that night) while you nursed. You were, of course, the most beautiful thing I'd ever seen and we were instantly in love with you.

This past year has been the biggest challenge and biggest blessing of my life. I can't sugar coat things. This year brought me to my knees. With your food intolerances and general sleeplessness, there were many times I felt (dramatically) sure I wouldn't make it another week as your mama. There were times I'd cry while you cried, knowing there wasn't much I could do to help you. One of my first big lessons as a mother has been letting go to God... knowing that this is a fallen, broken world and that I can't protect you from pain. But I can dedicate you to God, teach you to love the Lord, and bring you up in a godly home.... I can do that! And it eases my mind to know that whatever pain you may go through in this life, you are baptized in the name of Jesus. Your middle name, Jane, means "God's gracious gift" and I hope you never forget that you are exactly that to me and your dada. You are the BEST gift He could have given us.

So, my dear one, you will be one year old tomorrow and Godwilling you will live many more years on this earth. I can't wait to see what the next year of life brings for you and this family.

{your eyes are this amazing grey/blue color, with a bit of hazel in the center}

At (almost) one year old, you: walk around with a proud grin on your face; give super cute hugs and kisses; speed crawl to the door when you hear dada has come home; love balls, books, dogs, teddy bears, dolls, and Winnie the Pooh; have several words you use frequently (ball, book, bear, dada, mama, milk....); nurse pretty frequently; are the best snuggler in the world; have a knack for making people laugh and are frequently called a ham! You are a real people person; it's not uncommon that you'll be in a funky mood and the only thing to cheer you up will be going to a friend's house to play, or to the grocery store to flirt with people, or to a party. You are extremely passionate and your emotions vary wildly. You are the strongest ray of sunshine when you're happy and an absolute pit of despair when unhappy. Your dad and I live for your moments of happiness and are learning that your unhappy moments are ones we can use as opportunity to show how much we love you, baby tantrums and all.

I wish I could say I have it all down pat at being a mama, but I'm learning and growing so much along with you, little girl. You teach me everything important in life. I'm leaning more on God than ever before, and that in itself is not a bad thing but a blessing. 

I love you so!

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