Dear Charlotte Eve,
Looking at your face tonight as I nursed you before bed- I cannot believe our first year together has passed.
I remember your whirlwind labor, and the doctor telling me, "Look down! There's your baby!" You didn't look anything like I had expected. I thought you'd be small, like your brothers, and bald, like your brothers. I told everyone, "If she hadn't come out of me, I wouldn't believe that she's mine!"
You still don't look the way I imagined my daughter would- I thought I would have a curly-haired redhead with green eyes, and here you are, with your stick-straight brown hair and blue eyes! And you're oh so much better than anything I could have dreamed of.
You have made our lives immeasurably richer. I was anxious before you came that our family would change, and that your brothers wouldn't think I loved them anymore. Instead I've watched your brothers love you and care for you in a way I couldn't have imagined they would. Without you, our family didn't feel complete, and now that you're here, we are a family.
You've tried so hard to grow so fast this year. From barely dropping an ounce as a newborn and weighing 11 lbs at 1 month old, to eating my sandwiches at 6 months old and walking before you were 10 months old, you always seemed to be a 3 year-old in a baby's body.
I always wanted a baby girl. I always hoped we'd have a relationship like I have with my own mother. And while we haven't really shopped together yet, or talked about life's ups and downs, I've felt we were connected from the start. From the very first night of your life, when I leapt from the hospital bed in the middle of the night and bolted to the door to check on you in the nursery, only to find the nurse rolling your bassinet down the hallway for you to be fed, I have felt that you and I know each other well.
What a pleasure you have been this year- other than the fact that you gave up sleeping through the night around 4 months old. You have an easygoing nature, and such a happy smile. Meema always tells me you'll be trouble, because you smile at everyone you meet. Just yesterday you ran through the rest stop in Massachusetts smiling and waving at every man you met. Oh, boy. You're fearless at trying new things, which has resulted in a few mishaps over the months (like the time you accepted a wheat thin from your brother and choked!).
I love your little smile and silly giggle. I love that you love to see me every morning. I love that you wave goodnight to your brothers and daddy every night. I love your wide-legged walk, your big blue-gray eyes. I love the way you suck your thumb and snuggle your Kitty Cat at night and at naps. I love the way you scream for food when you're hungry, and hum with happiness when you eat. I love the way you pat me softly while you nurse. I love the way you take on the world- like it's here for your fun and pleasure.
I hope the years to come allow you to stay the way you are: wide-eyed with wonder and excitement, loving and lovable, curious and interested. I have loved meeting you, and getting to know you this past year, and I'm excited to find out what the future holds. You are my love, my kitty cat, my sweet petunia.
Many kisses and hugs,
|Happy 1st Birthday to my littlest angel|