Wednesday, April 30, 2014

Happy birthday, little girl

To our darling daughter on her first birthday, 

The words I am about to write come from an inexperienced parent. 

I've only been at this a year and I'll be honest with you, I still don't know what the heck I'm doing. 

Some of

Most of 

Often. Let's just say often. 

Of course, this is nothing really surprising. In that first year, no parent really does. Books and websites can only help you so much. You've got to learn this stuff on your own, and that's the real beauty of it all.

But my favorite time of the day is approximately 7:30 AM. Wanna know why? That's usually when I slowly creep into your room only to discover you're already awake, holding on to the railing of your crib while jumping up and down like it's a trampoline. And then, right about that point, you turn your head to see me and deliver that infectious smile we love so much. It's my absolute favorite moment of every day. 

(Of course then you get angry with us because we have to change your diaper which you made a mess out of during the night, but usually we're right back on track once you get something to eat for breakfast.)

I love to sit on the ground and play with you. Nothing really too complex yet. No Backgammon or Settlers of Catan. Your favorite game right now involves stacking your Greek alphabet blocks up four, maybe five high and you taking a swipe at them and knocking them to the ground. And then we clap. Then we might go outside to the apple tree in the backyard so you can sit in your swing and enjoy the breeze. 

Obviously it's not always like that. Sometimes you get pretty upset. So upset sometimes, that I feel like there's nothing I can do to make you happy. So you cry, and cry, and cry some more. Sometimes so much so that it even makes me cry as well. (Reader's Note: That hasn't happened in quite some time.) 

Those are the times when I just wish you could talk already and tell me what the problem is and how I can fix it. What do you need? Daddy will get it. What's wrong? Daddy will fix it. The world can be a confusing and frightening place for a baby.

While I'm thinking about it: Your diaper rashes.

I mean, good gosh, those diaper rashes. 


You are a tough little girl though - that much we can already tell. And you took wearing a helmet to help your little head grow like a pro. Probably better than even your parents did. You've taken more hearing tests than we would like to have put you through. And as much as we both would like to hold you and tell you everything's going to be okay with your little ear, deep down we both know it's all part of a greater plan.

I want you to know this important fact: Your Daddy is always going to fall short. I can try my hardest and always show you as much love as one human being can possibly show another. But you are God's perfect, wonderful creation. The love He has for you is immeasurable, don't ever forget that. 

And your Mom and I thank Him every single day for blessing our lives by placing you, our perfect little girl, right in the middle of it.

So our little birthday girl, I guess you're officially a one year old. You're getting bigger each day. Your Mom and I so look forward to watching you grow.

Day by day.

Year by year.

But all the while, we know one little important fact. 

You'll always be our little girl. 

Happy birthday, our little lovey.

Tuesday, April 8, 2014


I'm angry and I'm sad.  Last Friday, April 4 - dear Fred got to go Home.  He is no longer struggling to breathe, he isn't needing to have fluid drained from his lungs.  He has the perfect white blood cell count.  He isn't in pain.

I'm sad that, (in this life,) I don't ever get to see his face again.  I'm sad that left field will never be the same.  I'm sad that Maddie will never get to know him.  I'm sad that Brenda is left without her husband.  I'm sad that Misti and Julie have lost their awesome dad. 
Like I told Brenda and the girls - I don't pretend to imagine and know what they are going through and feeling.  I know what John and I are going through and feeling, and it sucks - so I truly can't fathom being in their shoes.  But if these last few days have done nothing else, they have shown how loved Fred was by so many people.  Thank you for sharing him with the rest of us.

We love you.  We are better people because of you. 
So, Fred, I really am happy that you are with Jesus right now.

But, selfishly for me, I'm still very very sad.