Monday, January 25, 2010

To Amelia, On Her First Birthday

My Darling Squishy Amelia Girl,

You are such a sweet addition to our little family. I am so blessed to be the one that everyone turns to, after seeing your smile, to ask if you are always such a happy girl. I love to watch the impact that your little one year old life has on complete strangers. You, my dear, are a light in this dim world. You brighten everyday for me.

You wake every morning with smiles, laughter, and bouncing. Your daddy and I both love to come get you out of your crib because we love being greeted by you and your bouncing. You love to bounce in your crib with your pudgy fingers wrapped around the side rail. You are eager to give us a morning kiss or two or five and then you point to the stairs to let us know where you want to go.

We enjoy watching you play with Abiah and Hazel. You guys play Legos together almost every day. And you do a good job at trying to get those pieces to stick together. As I watch you rock your dollies I see your tender little heart taking care of them. Even if they are upside down and bent in half as you rock them. When I do phonics with Hazel or Abiah you are quick to get in your "b", "p", and "t" sounds.

You just started walking in the last month or so and to watch your chubby legs waddle across the floor only increases my need to pick you up to squeeze and kiss. You are climbing the stairs and learning, or demanding rather, to feed yourself. You've got four teeth with two more really close to coming in. And although you've not slept well the last three nights (which means Mommy and Daddy haven't slept well either) you still have a cheerful greeting for us in the morning.

Since today was your birthday we got to turn your car seat around to face the front of the car. You were so excited when we put you in the car to go on an adventure with a brand new view.

One of your birthday presents was our friend Hannah coming home FINALLY from her three month trip to Uganda, Africa. We missed her a lot. Hannah was at the hospital with me last year and got to see you be born. She has also been one of your favorite people. When she was in Africa we were talking to her online and when you saw her you got so excited you started yelling and dancing. What a treat to greet her at the airport on your birthday!

After we left the airport we went with Maga, Aunti Nana (Edna), Abiah and Hazel to a home decorating store to find a rocking chair for your birthday present. Daddy and I bought Hazel one for her birthday this last October and you LOVE it! You rock by yourself or with your dollies all the time.

You also like to stand in it backwards and lean over really far. That makes Mommy's heart beat a little faster. A lot faster.

When we first got to the store we found the exact chair that Hazel has. I put it in my cart because it looked like the only one in the store. I really wanted to get you one that was similar in color but not the same pattern. But I figured it would be okay if they matched and maybe if you both had the same chair you wouldn't fight over them so much.

After walking around the store for awhile we saw another lady with a chair in her cart that was similar in colors but a different pattern. We liked it better. When Maga went to ask her where she found it the lady showed her and said, "This is the last one they have in this pattern. But I wanted the one that lady has."

Well, "that" lady was me! We quickly traded chairs and we're both so happy to have found what we wanted. I know it may seem silly, Amelia, but I think God had something to do with that. I know we don't need these chairs. But I believe God knows we wanted to bless you with this gift and so he made a way for us to get it.

So after we left that store we drove over to IKEA. My beautiful girl, let me just say that the day had been a long one for you up to this point and you were handling it very well. I had been trying to keep you from being to hungry by giving you snacks (animal cracker, cheese sticks, jelly sandwiches, candy from Auntie Nana) and sips of water from your cup. But, my oh my, you have changed IKEA for me for a long time or maybe forever.

We went to the food court first. We were all hungry and wanted to fuel up for our big trip through IKEA. After carefully selecting food that I knew you, Hazel and Abiah would eat we navigated our way to a table and set up camp at a big round table. I had you on one side and Hazel on the other. Auntie Edna was next to Hazel and then came Abiah with Maga between him and you.

I quickly dished Abiah's bowl of food and got him eating and then went to work with you and Hazel. Spoon of mac-n-cheese to Hazel. Spoon of mac-n-cheese to Amelia. Back and forth, back and forth. I would take a quick break to feed myself and then start again. At one point I gave you both your cups of water and you chugged like you were drinking pure gold. Maga, knowing of your's and your sister's love of veggies, asked if she could give you a slice of steamed carrot. And this is where it got reeeeealy bad.

Just as the couple across from us got settled into their seats and began eating you choked. And then you blew. As in projectile vomit. As in so projectile that it went across the cart you were sitting in, over my leg, and half way under the table almost to Auntie Edna's feet. It was on the table. On my leg. On your leg. And ALL over the floor and the base of the table. I felt so bad for you but couldn't help laughing about the reaction of the people around us whether intentional or not.

Right after "the incident" I heard all these chairs around us scrape the floor as those who had been using them quickly stood up. It seemed as though it was synchronized. The couple that had just sat down next to our table tried to act as if they hadn't seen what had just happened and weren't seeing was now covering the floor of the place they were eating and the people and the table next to them. When the staff came over to see what needed to be cleaned up I wanted to cry and laugh hysterically at the same time when I heard the lady say, "puke" in a "and now we have to clean up this mess" tone of voice.

After they swept most of it into a dust pan and then rubbed the rest of it into a bigger area of the floor with a mop (Ew, gross! I don't know why they think that helps.) they hurried away to whatever else they could find, I'm sure. I would have.

As we changed plans from a stroll through IKEA into a quick trip to pick a few things up you got really tired. And even though you smelled like puke I couldn't resist when you reached to me with your soft little hands and begged me with those blue eyes all droopy with sleep to hold you. And holding you brought that little ray of sunshine back into my moment of grey.

And even though I pray that you please, PLEASE sleep through the night tonight, I can't wait to see your smile and hold your chubby little self next to me while I drink in the smells of your soft baby skin. And as we chatter together I'll pray that this next year doesn't goes by so quickly.

Happy 1st Birthday Amelia!


LaFonda Dunlap said...

Oh my goodness. This one had me laughing and crying! She is such a beautiful gift to our family. I love your mother heart. I could hear it see it and feel it throughout your whole story. Thanks for sharing it with us.

Hannah said...

This little squishy baby girl has a very special place in my heart. She's changed so much in the last 3 months. But she's only gotten cuter!! I'm looking forward to spending time with her again and I plan on being around a little more this year to watch her grow up :) I love you Millie girl!! Happy Birthday