Thursday, 16 May 2013

dearest penelope, on your first birthday

from 1 to 365 days old

Dear Penelope,

Is it true? Are we really here, at this pivotal moment in both of our lives? Your first birthday? For you, it was the first year of your life. For me, it was my first year as a mother, and in a lot of ways, a new life for me too.

A few days ago your Daddy and I took a trip away for the night. It was our first trip away since you were born. Where we stayed, there was a Mummy and Daddy horse. In the night, while we slept, the Mummy had a beautiful baby. This baby horse is called a foal.

 I watched that Mummy and baby together for a long time. The Daddy was laying on the grass lazily beside them (really, the Dad was laying down, not the Mom!) I watched the Mother, and tears came to my eyes, as I thought of you. That Mummy gave birth to her child all alone in the pasture, for all the world to see. That is how I felt when you were born. It seemed that the whole world was there watching you be born, but really, it was just me and you baby! It was up to the two of us, and I pushed as hard as I could, and I know you worked hard too. And here you are, safely in my arms. I thank the Lord for that, because you know he had everything to do with you being born.

Another thought crossed my mind as I watched that little foal with his parents. Did you know that baby horses are practically born walking? He was only a few hours old, and already standing beside his parents. I realized that I'm glad human babies don't walk right away. Because, in a lot of ways, I felt like a baby myself when you were born. We have learned along side each other, each and every day.

When you learned to smile at about four weeks, I also learned about true joy. The type of joy that only God gives. When you learned to reach out, I started to learn what it truly means to reach for the stars. To hope for the highest hopes and the biggest dreams, for both you and me. When you learned to sit up, I also learned what it means to stand tall. To be firm in my beliefs and never think twice or look back. When you learned to crawl, and chase the world around you. I also learned what it means to be persistent, to dust myself off, and keep trying.

This year has been a year of growing and changing and learning, for us all. You have grown from a very small and helpless baby, to a toddler that knows exactly what she wants, and often exactly how to get it!

You are a great joy to watch. I love you so much and some days wonder how on earth you became so intelligent, humorous  and absolutely stunning. The Lord, in his infinite mercy and grace, gave your Daddy and I such a generous gift.

I look forward to this second year, a new journey together. Where we can continue to laugh and grow. Thank you for being my bright shining star, just like that precious baby foal is a star to his Mommy too.

Love you!


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