“If ever there is tomorrow when we're not together.. there is something you must always remember. You are braver than you believe, stronger than you seem, and smarter than you think. But the most important thing is, even if we're apart.. I'll always be with you.”
~A.A. Milne, from "Winnie the Pooh"

Friday, June 22, 2012

Revisiting the Past...

Dearest Lydia,
We're nearing an important anniversary...one that a year ago on this date, I simply couldn't have imagined ever celebrating. The day that I dreaded, that I feared, the cause of many, many sleepless nights spent perched at this keyboard, wrestling with my worries and fighting off my panic. 
Those days are dark in my memory. I couldn't tell you the simple day to day routine of those seemingly endless hours leading up to July 14th because, although at the time I remember trying to drink you in just in case my fears came to pass, I also walked through those hours in a haze of what can only be described as sheer terror, as well as the blurriness that comes from very little sleep.
I spent a whole lot of time watching other babies who had the same surgery, watching them flourish, watching them grow, watching their own surgeries fade behind them. And yet, those babies couldn't provide salve for my own wounded heart and couldn't silence the hiss of my mind which echoed again and again that those babies weren't MY baby and that none of this (Down syndrome and open heart surgery) was supposed to happen to us in the first place. 
Its funny, looking back, how those horrible days of worrying myself sick seem so ridiculous now. We live in a place where these types of surgery, although always considered major and always coming with a chance of complications, have a 90%+ success rate. All I can say is that my mommy neuroses were running ramped and the love I already felt for you brought my worst fears of losing you to the forefront of my already battered mind. 
By the time we came home from our hospital stay, I already knew without a doubt that July 14th would always be a day of celebration in our home. I knew that I would work my entire life to show you exactly how beautiful your scars are to me, exactly how grateful I am that you have them.  And I know that even if I see your perfect heart beating on a screen a thousand times, I will still always get a lump of gratefulness in my throat. You being here with us, alive, healthy, full of energy and joy, is so much a miracle to me that I don't think that if I have a thousand years to live with you beside me and thanked God for the gift of you every single day, it would never be enough......
The transition from infant to toddler has taken me by surprise. It seemed that it happened overnight...you lost your baby face, your spindly baby legs, and your sweet baby personality. You became even sassier, even tougher, even more ornery. You make mad faces. You laugh at what you think is funny and pointedly growl at things you don't find even faintly amusing. You have definite opinions on everything, as you laughingly tear apart the house. And although I knew it would happen someday, that someday seemed still so far away. Until it was here. I'm loving every minute of it. :)

You, my sweet girl, are so much more than I could have ever dreamed of...and so much more than I could have imagined in those dark days before a healthy heart.  I can't wait to celebrate your special day this year, minus all the bells and whistles that kept us from truly celebrating last year. 
I love you more than life, little Bug. 



  1. What a beautiful anniversary to be celebrating! We celebrated Vada's last month!

  2. Haha, I love that first picture, she's so cute :)


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