I will never forget the day you were born. After 2 years of trying to conceive, 9 months of morning sickness and various aches and pains, and 8 hours of the most intense pain I have ever experienced, came the most joyous moment of my life. They placed you on my chest, all covered in slime, and you barely made a peep. No crying, just contentment. I held you for the next 30 minutes and breathed in your brand new baby smell. We had been through a lot together and this was the moment we had both been waiting for. Your long nails scratched my skin, your little tongue licked your lips and your squinty eyes examined your new surroundings.
I love the little girl you are growing into and look forward to the next year of watching you grow. It is such a priviledge to be your mother. It brings great joy to my heart to see your face light up when I enter the room, to recieve one of your wide-mouthed kisses, watch you clap your hands and wave bye-bye for no apparent reason, hear you say "Doh Dee Doh Dee Doh" and "Dada" for the majority of the day, and watch you throw your hands in the air when we say, "SO BIG!". I love the way you smell right after a bath - so fresh and clean! I love the way you hug your teddy bears, squeezing them tightly and shaking side to side. I love your open-mouthed smile and how giggly you get right before bedtime. But my favorite thing you do is when you randomly crawl over to me and lay your head on me for a cuddle. I just can't get enough of that!
Here's what you are up to at ONE YEAR!!!!
- You are at least 22 pounds and over 31 inches tall. I will do the actual measurements later today and update.
- You have just started standing and taking your first few steps. It really came out of nowhere! You can stand on your own for several seconds at a time and have taken as many as 5 steps in a row. You get so excited when you start walking! Adorable!
- You can sign the word "milk" and do it all the time (even if you aren't hungry). Sometimes it means "milk", but other times it means "all done", "duck", or "hi" :-)
- You say "Dada" all day long, but a few weeks ago you started saying "Mama", which brings such joy to my heart!! You also bark every time you see a dog! Adorable. You don't say many words, but you sure do understand a bunch!
- You love to dance and it's just precious! You can also do the motions to "Two Little Eyes" (point to your eyes and ears, open and close your hands, and stomp your feet). You are so smart!
- You love to climb on your "Hannah" chair and you can get in and out all by yourself.
- You still wear size 4 diapers and are wearing all 12 month clothes and some 18 month pajamas (although they are too long still). You are wearing size 4 shoes too (although you only have 1 pair).
- You still only have your two bottom teeth. And I really don't see any others coming in.
- You are great at helping Mommy get you dressed - at least when you will actually sit still long enough to do that. You stick your little arms right through the holes and then take off again! ;-)
- You started eating a few new foods this month - french toast, pancakes, waffles, nectarines, strawberries, and cheese. Unfortunately we had to stop apples again because they really don't agree with your bowels. :-( Hopefully you will be able to eat apples one day because you really love them!
- Your schedule these days looks like this:
- 7am - Wake, Nurse, Diaper Change
- 7:30am - Solids (usually cereal and fruit, but sometimes you have french toast, pancakes or waffles and fruit)
- 8am - Playtime
- 9:15 or 9:30am - Nap (most of the time you only sleep 30 minutes, but a few times this month you slept a full hour!)
- 10:15 or 10:30am - Playtime
- 11:30am - Solids (usually a meat, veggie and fruit)
- 12pm - Playtime
- 1:30pm - Nap (most of time this nap is only 30 minutes as well, but a few times this month you slept for a full hour. And a couple times you actually slept for 2 hours! WOW!)
- 2:30pm - Playtime
- 3pm - Snack (breastmilk in a sippy cup and a veggie or cheese)
- 3:30pm - Outside time (this is usually a long walk in the stroller), followed by more playtime!
- 5:30pm - Solids (usually a few veggies and a fruit)
- 6pm - Daddy time
- 7pm - Bedtime routine (pjs, diaper, nurse, brush teeth, story, prayers, song, in bed)
A year ago today we had no idea what being parents really meant. No one could have prepared us for the year ahead. I spent over a year reading every parenting book I could get my hands on, writing down detailed notes and planning out your schedule as best I could. I thought I was prepared, but I had so much to learn! The Lord spent the first year of your life teaching me just how much I needed Him. I thought I had it all under control, but when you didn't fit into the mold I had planned out, everything fell apart. I have had to learn over and over that I am not in control and that the Lord is. Letting go of my tight grip has been painful at times, but also very freeing. I won't lie and say that the past year has been joyous at every turn...it hasn't. It's been a tough year. It's been a year filled with growth for everyone. But it's been the best year of my life!
Happy Birthday little peanut! No matter how big you get, you will always be our little girl! We love you unconditionally (believe me, you have tested that this year) and are so thankful that the Lord blessed us with you!