A fellow mom of three and good friend of mine told me if I could survive the first year of having three little ones, I could survive anything. ‘Just get through this first year‘. I’ve repeated this momtra over and over and over until finally, here we are: At the first year mark. We survived. Barely. But we made it. I dedicate this one to my last baby’s first birthday.
To my third baby on your first birthday,
The day I found out you were growing inside of me I cried–actually, I smacked your dad first, then I cried. I will admit, of all the emotions that ran through me in that moment, joy wasn’t at the top of the list–yet. Scared, overwhelmed, and sheer panic are the emotions that swallowed me whole. You see, in my mind and uterus, I was so completely done having kids. Your brother and sister had already chewed me up and spit me out up until this point, and I truly didn’t have any energy left. I gave all my baby stuff away in the move without a second thought of neeeding it. I lost count of how many times I half jokingly told your dad I would be living in a padded room if we ever had another. We had a child for each hand, no further discussion needed.
But God and my ovulation tracker app had different plans and here you are, an entire year old, and the only emotion that runs through me now is pure joy! Wait, that’s not entirely true. Impatience, annoyance, exhaustion and my morning coffee also run through me, but, joy is definitely the main one. The point here is that I didn’t realize how much our family of four needed that fifth wheel until you came into our life. You literally have been the calm within the chaos of our storm. All of those initial emotions of having another child–the panic, the fear, the overwhelming thoughts of worry all subsided with you. You are possibly the happiest baby: even managing a smile after your brother puts you in one of his signature headlocks.
Before I had you, I cursed all those lying liars that told me their baby slept through the night at six weeks and that’s all thanks to your sister never learning how to actually close her eyes. But, I can now say I’m a firm believer that not all babies lie awake at night plotting to siphon their parents last stitch of sanity. Thank you for that.
Watching you play with your siblings reminds me of when I was younger with my own: some of my best memories that I’m so glad you will have, too. Your energy is abundant, your three toothed smile is contagious, and your peg legged crawl is like no other. You rock your sister’s hand me downs like a boss, and don’t you worry, one day we’ll get you a brand new pair of pants–tags and all!
Crazier and louder this is true, but the biggest addition we didn’t know we needed is the blessing of you. Ava, you’re so darn special to this family, and I’m forever grateful and honored that you are mine. We love you!
Happy 1st Birthday.