Oh, little girl.
The task of reflecting on the first year of your life feels
impossible to write without relying on tired cliché. The year has flown! Where has the time gone? It can’t be a year!
Already??? But these are the words that come instantly to mind, the
words I have been uttering all year long as your babyhood disappeared before my
Of course, you are still a baby. And may very well always be
our baby – certainly to your doting Daddy. Oh sweet girl, he will bend to your
every will. And I am not far behind because, my tiny love, you steal the air
from my lungs at least once a day. With every cell in my body, I love you. It
is my singular privilege to be your greatest source of comfort. For now, I am your home. And in my arms, you fit. Somewhere else I wrote that you grow ever bigger
and are less easily tucked against me when we rock together in our chair and
yet somehow our puzzle pieces still fit. As you grow, we grow and adapt and
change. And it is the greatest blessing to watch you grow and also, a dull
aching in the heart because nothing lasts forever and these moments, I really
wish they would.
Every day, you are amazing. You learn and you develop and
your little face grows ever more curious, your little hands reaching for all
the things that you cannot have. Your laughter breaks like a million tiny
shards of glass inside my heart because your joy is all I could ever dream of
and seeing it come true can be too much to bear.
Harlow Rose, I waited forever for you and now one whole year
of having you has slipped by. How can I ever, ever hope to recall each amazing
thing that you have done? The sound of your voice saying "buh buh" but only ever
after the person has already gone, your sweet, crooked smile, the way you raise
those little eyebrows, your obsession with chewing on toilet rolls. No note
written in a baby book can truly capture the moment your eyelids grew too heavy
with sleep as I rocked you back and forth or recall the feeling of your little
arms clinging to my neck.
These words might take me back but we can never actually rewind and sometimes the truth of that sits heavy on my chest. Newborn you is
gone and I was not even close to being done absorbing your perfect newness. Two months, four months, nine months. They
have all raced by and none of those months, not one of them, was long enough.
But at twelve little months, you are a delight. A boob
fiend, a champion snuggler, a mad fan of your brothers, a master manipulator of
your Daddy (he is ALWAYS holding you!) and the funniest little girl I ever did
meet. You can be found escaped into the back yard eating leaves or climbing
something you shouldn’t be. I am worried you may have a leeeetle bit of a temper. You look a lot like your dad. And you look
plenty like me. It’s hard to imagine how your little face will develop with
time. But rest assured, darling one, to your dad and I, you are simply the most
beautiful little girl to every grace God’s earth.
Happy, Happy Birthday, Harlow Rose. You are a dream come
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