A Letter to My Daughter on Her First Birthday

birthday card

I can’t believe it has been a year already. I mean, we just brought her home, like so little ago! Now she is one. ONE you guys!!! How could one feel so huge?

To my beautiful daughter on your first birthday,

You turned ONE!

It is truly bittersweet to see how quickly time is passing and how fast you are growing up, but it’s also so incredibly exciting to witness you bloom and become you.

I‘ll never forget the first day we brought you home from the hospital. You were so teeny tiny. You were the most beautiful baby girl I had ever seen. I was so excited to be home and start our life as a family of four. Even though we just went through this with your brother, we really had no idea what we were doing. And to honest, we are still winging it. Ha. With each new day and passing milestone, I would say, “OH! This is my favorite stage!” Then I would find myself saying the exact same thing the next day. And the next. And the week after that. I quickly learned that each day is better than the day before when you’re around.

In a way, we all grew together over the past year. You learned many things, we learned many things.

You learned to laugh, and I learned that your giggle is my new favorite sound in life.

You learned to point point point your finger at things, and I learned that you are a girl who knows exactly what she wants.

You learned to say “dada” + “mama”. Then you learned to say “bubba” + “tickle tickle”, and I learned you are one smart cookie.

You learned to push doors + open drawers, and I learned that nothing could ever get in your way. You’re surely on a mission.

You learned to roll over, to crawl, to sit up, to take your first steps, and I suddenly learned that you wouldn’t stay a baby forever. That’s alright! No matter how many candles you blow, as long as I’m your momma, in my heart my baby you will always be.

Funny thing is, in many ways, you taught us more than we taught you.

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Each day I watch you learn + explore the world around you + I find myself getting excited about the simple joys in life again.

The love you have for the beach…

The way you gaze at the ocean…

How you light up when you see your brother…

You need to do whatever your brother is doing…

The fascination you have with Gus…

Your obsession with your bebita…

Enjoying the little things with you has been the best!

I’ve learned to see the world through your (and your brother’s) eyes + suddenly, everything is even more amazing.

I love being your personal jungle gym.

I love being your favorite pillow.

I love being your safety blanket.

I love loving life with you!

I have been determined to soak up every day with you, especially since you waste no time growing up.

You love the ocean. Every time we are at the beach you crawl straight into it, fearless, with purpose. You are a total beach babe. You ’ve loved the water so much, since day one.

You love books, especially the ones with animals.

You love circling coffee tables like an Olympic athlete doing laps.

You love tickle fights, especially with your brother.

You love to kidnap our phones + pretend to talk on it. Alooooo!!!

Oh! And you LOVE music. You dance and hum anytime you hear it. Girl, you got rhythm.

And have I told you how stunningly beautiful you are? Your Minnie Mouse lashes, gorgeous blue eyes, and bright red hair literally stopped strangers in their tracks. (What a beautiful baby!) But even more mesmerizing than your looks, is the beauty of your personality. It amazes everyone that meets you. Wherever we are, you wave + throw kisses + give high fives + clap your hands, as if you were part of the welcoming committee. Everyone wants to be around you. It’s a pull. You’ve got it.

We did it, Miss Caroline James. We survived the first round!

As you can probably tell, 39 weeks inside my belly wasn’t enough time to prepare my heart for the magnitude of “love”. I’m convinced that’s why moms cry so much because we have so much love in us, it can’t possibly fit all inside our bodies, so we overflow. That’s what tears are, joy exploding out of our eyes like liquid confetti.

I guess what I’m trying to say is: I am so grateful that you chose me to be your mommy Caroline James. You know I asked for you too, right? Dad and I both did. We prayed for you… dreamed about you… waited our whole lives for you. You and your brother are our world. I want you to know that.

Thank you for the lessons, the laughter, and the wake-up calls of what’s truly important in life. Thanks for changing me forever and bringing out the best in me. You make me want to be better and do better, not only as a mother but as a wife + sister + daughter + friend.

I hope when you’re able to read this letter, years down the road, you will smile, and know that the day you were born was one of the happiest days of my life. And this year has been one of my greatest adventures!

Happy First Birthday, Baby Girl.

Your dad + Bubba + I love you very much.

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