Nine years ago my world changed forever. Unexplainably. For the better. Nine years ago this bundle of joy, of tears, of incessant crying and unbelieveable beauty was born.
Some days seem fraught with arguments, lessons and timeless moments of struggle. Yet whole months and even years pass by before I am ready.
Every Mom will tell you that parenting is the hardest job ever given to anyone. I would agree. There is no textbook or google search that tells me if I’m making the right choices. And sometimes I don’t. And sometimes I won’t know for years if I’m right or wrong.
|puddle jumping 2007|
I see this beautiful creature in front of me each day and I want to make her life perfect for her, yet I want her to struggle enough to know she’s earned it. I want everyone to be nice to her and love her as much as I do, but I am so proud when I see her stand up to injustices in life.
|self haircut--summer 2008|
I want to strangle her when she does things like cut her own hair to resemble Joe Dirt and then be proud of it. Or argue with me because she is so my child that she can’t stand to believe she might be wrong and now I’m fighting with a version of myself. Or refuse to keep her room or even her seat in the car clean.
|First Day of kindergarten--2009|
I want to put her up on my shoulders and parade the world to show her off when she’s the only 3rd grader to make Straight A’s all year. Or be chosen as Citizen of the Year, or win a bike for reading the most books in 2nd grade. Or be voted class president. Or stand up to a bully and put her in her place for hurting others when no one else would. Or know her limits and turn down honors because she knows she can't do it all at the age of 9.
|Little Queen--Homecoming 2010|
I want to shield her from the drama that comes with being a girl and bickering with other girls. I want to shield her from the hurt that comes with living in this imperfect world. I want to take all of the insensitive people that would knowingly or uncaringly hurt my precious child and show them how it feels.
But I try to let her learn.
Emma is her own person. She makes her own rules. She is a combination of her Daddy and me. And yet, she is herself. She feels no need to conform most of the time. She’d rather play alone than live by someone else’s rules. She is determined to make her way in this world and no one will stand in her way. She is a dreamer. She is a fighter. She is Emma.
|Haircut after donating to Locks of Love--June 2011|
Nine years ago yesterday, Chris and I became parents to the most beautiful gift God had ever given me. He gave me the gift of a daughter.
He gave me the gift of Emma Grace.
I pray each day for this beautiful gift I call my daughter. I pray that she will continue to push her boundaries. I pray that she will continue to grow, physically, mentally and spiritually too. I pray that she will chase her dreams (but am afraid for her to go to far from home). I pray that I will be strong enough to let her go, to encourage her when I’m afraid to let her try. I pray that I will always see that what I dream for her may not be what she dreams for herself and to know the difference. I pray that God will take my special girl and make a special woman out of her in time. But I also pray that time will slow enough that I can enjoy each day before that with my baby girl.
I am truly blessed and my cup runneth over mightily.
Happy Birthday Emma! We love you more than you will ever know.