Thursday, April 2, 2015

Dear Sydney

I wrote this letter to Sydney a few minutes after she turned one year old. Emotions were running at an all-time high, as Jordan was out of town and I was listening to Taylor Swift's "Never Grow Up" practically on repeat. Hot. Mess. Anyway, I thought I would share it...


My Sydney Belle,

I'm already crying three words in because I can't believe this day has come already. Where did the last year go? January 28, 2014 at 1:46 in the morning until now, January 28, 2015 at 2:08 in the morning, has easily been the best and fastest of my life all because of you. This year has been filled with the most wonderful memories, both big and small, and I have never learned more of myself and of life until I met you -- sweet, wonderful, gentle, loving you.

When I was little, I never really knew what I wanted to be when I grew up. Ranging from a pirate to a teacher to a doctor to an artist and more, nothing ever quite sat with me long enough for me to really invest myself. As the years went by and I grew older, I knew no matter what job I had or what I would become, the only thing I really wanted to be is a mom. A joke I had with your Aunt Suzy is that I had so much love for my unborn children -- but as much as we laughed about it, truer words were never spoken. When your dad and I were dating, he would always joke that he couldn't wait to meet our baby--this is coming from a man who used to be a self-proclaimed commitment-phobe--because he thought he or she would be an amazing tiny human. I want you to know, honey, you were so loved by Mommy and Daddy before we even knew you could or would exist. 

Your dad told me on my 30th birthday that he wanted to start trying for a baby, and I will never forget that moment because I knew we were about to embark on the most exciting adventure of our lives. Only a short 2.5 months later we were pregnant with you, and I started feeling a sense of happiness, settlement and satisfaction set in I had never felt before. While I didn't love being pregnant (you gave me a hell of a 10 months, sweetheart), I loved feeling every single kick, nudge, hiccup and jab you made. Even when you were running your hand along the inside of my ribs and tickling me so hard (which you did because we saw you doing it), I couldn't help but feel a burst of love because I loved you so much already.

Believe it or not, and I'm probably in the minority with this opinion, I absolutely loved labor and delivery. I think it was because I didn't have the easiest pregnancy and I couldn't wait to meet you -- to hold you, kiss you, snuggle you, smell you, see you. Our 3D and 4D ultrasounds were amazing, but I just wanted to kiss those big cheeks I kept seeing. After almost 36 hours of relatively okay labor, I finally saw your beautiful tiny face. In one split second, I finally understood the true meaning of unconditional love and why I was put on Earth; I was meant to be your mommy. I was meant to your protector, your caretaker, your giver. 

You were such a good infant -- like scary good. I kept asking your pediatrician if any of your behaviors were red flags because I couldn't believe how easy we had it. You were a great sleeper from the start (I swear it was because of my crazy theory! I will teach when you're pregnant), you were so quiet, gentle and sweet; your dad and I never dealt with endless crying fits or long nights with no sleep. This only made us fall in love with you that much more. As you've grown older and become more independent, it's so fun to see your little personality start to shine. You are your father's daughter. Not only do you look so much like him (including his hair, which I am so sorry about -- I tried), but your personality is so much like him as well. Your daddy is so sweet and thoughtful, careful and cautious, but really lets loose when he's comfortable. That is you to a T, little bug. You're also so smart and so funny just like your dad, and you learn new things very easily and very quickly. Your quiet and shy demeanor is so sweet, and I can't wait to see if you stay that way.

[I'm typing this letter two months after I wrote it...I think it's safe to say you're starting to break out of your shell. I would say the good employees of Target would most likely agree with this.]

As you've started to explore this big world on your own, you've definitely opened up and started challenging me in ways I never knew I could be challenged. I've never considered myself a very patient person, but with you I find myself continuously surprised by the amount I have. Even so there are days when I wish I could take a time out, but then you go down for a nap and I miss you terribly. When you wake up refreshed, I'm refreshed as well and ready to tackle our next mini adventure.

In the last year I feel I have taught you so much -- to roll over, to crawl, to sign, to kiss, to hug, to walk (we're almost there!) and more. But really it's you who has taught me so much; you've taught me how to be more loving, more patient, more grateful, more appreciative, more humble, and more at peace with who I am. You've made me want to be a better person because I want to always be the best mommy I can for you and our family. I want to be the best role model, so you can look up and be proud. I want to be caring, creative, fun and unconditionally loving. I want you to know every day how much you mean to me, and if nothing else I want you to know how much you are loved.

I have so many hopes for you, sweetheart. I hope you live a life with no regrets. I hope you make mistakes but learn from them. I hope you make good friends and are in turn a good friend yourself. I hope you stay safe and make smart decisions. I hope you meet someone as wonderful as your dad and get to be a wife and a mother. You are turning into such a beautiful little girl, and I hope your dad and I can teach you to live a life with Jesus so that you're as beautiful on the inside as you are on the outside. I pray for your guidance and your heart every single day, and I want you to know there is nothing you can't do if you set your mind to it. I want to be your biggest cheerleader and support and encourage you always, and I want you to always know I will be there when you fall. But most of all, I hope and pray for your happiness, health and safety. Always and forever.

I love you so much, Sydney, and I am so thankful God chose you for me and me for you. You are the best thing to ever happen to us, and you are our greatest blessing and biggest piece of our hearts.

Happy birthday, sweetheart. We love you forever.



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