Tuesday, May 19, 2009

364 Days

I am not an emotional person. Honest. Ask anyone who knows me.

And yet today, on the eve of the first anniversary of Lila's entry onto this earth, I am emotional.

I find myself asking why. Because she might be our last baby? Because I am sad that she's moving away from being BabyGirl and towards being Big Girl? Because unlike her brothers she made it through her first year minus health scares and hospitalizations? Because I haven't slept in five years?

Who knows.

In all my emotional reminiscing, I decided to look at pictures of her first days. Perhaps this was a mistake.

It all came flooding back.

  • How weird it was to have a baby girl instead of a baby boy. (That weirdness wore off quickly.)
  • How easy her delivery was. (But everything's relative, the boys' births were monumental feats, to say the least.)
  • How right after she was born, she cried for four.hours.straight. (I wondered if this is what they were talking about when people told me girls were harder!)
  • How she had the softest skin, the sweetest smell, and the cutest little ski feet. (She still does.)
  • How much the boys have grown in a year. (I was aware of how much she had grown, but seeing Cole's blonder hair and Mason's babyish face took me back as how quickly time is passing.)

It feels like it was just yesterday, but at the same time it seems like she's always been a part of our family.

Her birth thrust me into a job that I was hardly prepared for--being a mother of three.

Rey was working in Key West for nearly half of Lila's life. He moved back there when she was three weeks old and returned when she was almost six months old. There were many times during that period where I recall sincerely questioning God if I would survive. But now, six months later, although I can remember how hard it was, my I can't remember the feeling of desperation. It's a lot like Mason's NICU stay and Cole's hospital time--I remember the sadness and pain but I can no longer feel it.

It's funny how your biggest challenge in life is also your greatest reward. There's something in every birthday that's a poignant reminder of that.

As of tomorrow, Lila's age will no longer be measured in months, but years. We are closing one door and opening another.

But until then, I will hold my not-a-one-year old, she will curl up in a tiny, shirtless, diapered ball and hug me like her life depended on it.

Unconditional love--it's so great to give it and so great to take it.

1 comment:

The Manrings said...

oh it is an emotional time! on the eve of sammy's first birthday i remember holding her longer than usual and feeling so sad and happy at the same time. she is STILL YOUR BABY GIRL and that is a fact. HAPPY BIRTHDAY to a pretty little girl...you're ONE oh how fun! hope the cupcake party is a blast. xo