Since it is now after midnight, I can officially wish our little princess a Happy Birthday.
Five years ago today, I woke up at just shy of 37 weeks pregnant, no signs of labor or delivery for weeks to come. I went in for an ultra sound in the morning and by mid afternoon, I was told that they wanted to deliver our baby by C-section that evening. I won’t go into detail on her birth story (you can read more about that a Our 3-21 Blessing).
Long story short, our lives changed forever that day. That is the day that we were blessed with an angel. An angel that would change us. An angel that would re-prioritize our outlook on life. She would teach us to trust in God, savor the little things, not rush the big things and to enjoy the everyday journeys.
You see, we were given a beautiful baby girl. A girl who was different from the ordinary. A girl who the medical field suggested we not even bring into this world. It saddens me to no end to relive in my head, the day that I was given unsolicited options to terminate my pregnancy if and when it was confirmed that our expectant baby would have Down syndrome.
What if I was influenced by such suggestions? What if I didn’t have a God-given peace in following His plan for this child? What if….
To never hear her infectious laugh, to never feel her strong hugs, to never wipe her tears when she falls, to never cheer her on at her T-ball games, to never see her laugh, run, and play with “normal” kids who adore her as their loving friend, to never feel the crazy powerful impact she has had on our life and those lives around us. It is totally inconceivable to me. Likewise I can not imagine her as “normal”. She is exactly who she is and I would not change a thing about her.
She is a gift, straight from God. In five years she has really taught me to chill out. Life isn’t a race or an endless to do list. It is an adventure and every moment is worth savoring.
With our first child, I will admit, I was on a mission from one milestone to another. Sign language by 6 months – Check! Walk by 1 year – Check! Potty train by 2 – Check! Our son, hit every mile stone at or ahead of all the “typical” times. I never savored the moment before I was on to the next item on the check list.
But that was not the case with our daughter. Though I will admit, it was hard to accept at first, I learned to accept and embrace it. She didn’t sign until 10 months…but she did it and she had a much larger signing vocabulary than our son ever had. She didn’t walk until she was 2 years old. But once she started, she took off and she hasn’t slowed down since. She is now five and still not potty trained, but she will be, when she is ready. And when it takes longer and you try harder for something, it makes it that much more rewarding when you finally get there.
She has her own schedule of doing things and it has been a joy to savor her determination, her struggles and her eventual successes. She is one strong-willed little fire cracker and I know that when she sets her mind to something, she will eventually achieve and excel at it. Our son has even learned to encourage and celebrate every struggle and every success with her. We have dance parties when she goes pee on the potty, he says “Great job” when she plays her iPad learning games, he says “wow, good job C…Mom, did you hear how clearly she said that”. It is so awesome to see how this little girl is even teaching her big brother life lessons. I can not wait to see the lifelong impact her life will have on his and his on hers.
Five years ago, I had no idea what was in store. Yes, I was scared. I didn’t know what to expect. But I have learned to go with the flow and to stop trying to control everything in my life. Because I’m not in control, I never was and I never will be. He is in control, and He knows what is best, and he knows what I need. He knows what areas I need to grow in and the vehicle to get me there. This little girl is one of our life’s most unexpected blessings. A blessing whose impact I still realize more and more with each passing day. Being mom to this beautiful little girl and her brother is life’s greatest gift.
Happy Birthday C! Mommy loves you for exactly who you are…our angel!