Wednesday, July 2, 2014

Sweet Girl, On Your First Birthday...

My dear, sweet and precious Lucy Paige,

You have been in our lives for a year now (technically 21 months ;) ). I will tell you that this has been one of the most challenging years of mine and your Daddy's life - we've had to learn how to take care of you; balance work, friends, family, and life's stressors; learn how to be a parent and still be husband and wife first; learn your many quirks and characteristics; and so much more. It has been the easiest thing we've ever done and the hardest. There have been moments when we thought to ourselves, "Did God really mean for us to have a child?" as well as many more moments when we thought, "Oh my word, this is the most precious girl in the world! What did we ever do without her?". You truly are pure joy and we love you more than words can ever express.

Because of you, we have experienced a little of how much God loves His children - that unconditional love, agape love, love without reservation or strings attached. Your Daddy and I love each other very much but it isn't that "no strings attached love". We have failed each other miserably and often, we easily forget that we actually do really, really love one another. But, you my dear, have shown us how we need to love. We are most thankful for how God has used you to show us how much He loves us.

I read a question today from someone and it was, "When did your baby's characteristics begin to show?". I can tell you, with complete certainty, that you have been exactly you since day one. You had the teeny-ist, tiniest squeaky voice. You went from 0 to 60 in .001 seconds. You loved attention. You had the best expressions. You still have all those quirks and many more have developed as you've grown. And my goodness, you have grown so much. You are the silliest child, you love to laugh and make us laugh too. You love your babies and stuffed animals. Right now your favorites are Henry, Little Baby, Easter Duckie, Thomas Bear, and Curious George. You still go 0 to 60 in .001 seconds and you let us know very quickly when you are not happy, which is rare but it still happens. You hated, hated, hated your carseat as a tiny baby and now you tolerate it somewhat. You love talking and making silly noises, you always have. I love your voice, it is so sweet and small. Just like you, small and sweet. You have always adored Daddy and me, your face lights up when one of us comes in the room. When you love something you "pat-pat" it and will hold it to the side of your face like your hugging it. You "pat-pat" Calvin all the time; you actually learned the pat because of Calvin. You used to hit him and pull his hair and then you learned the importance of not hitting and pulling hair. :) From then on you started patting him and everything else. I adore your "pat-pat"s so much. It's the sweetest thing ever.

Lucy, it is our prayer that you grow up to love Jesus. Daddy and I try our best to point you to Jesus, even now as a baby. We pray together daily and when I put you down at night, after we pray, I always tell you that I love you but Jesus loves you so much more than I ever can. And that's a whole lot because I sure do love you, way more than anyone else. I just want you to know that Daddy and I will mess up, we will fail you. But Jesus, He never, ever, ever will. He has the best plans for you, all you have to do is trust Him and know that He loves you and is our Savior. We will talk about all this when it is time, but until then Daddy and I will pray for you and keep telling you how much Jesus loves you.

This past year has been the best ever. I've learned more about myself than I ever thought a person could. I love being your mom, it's one of my most favorite roles (my favorite roles are as follows: daughter of the King, wife to TJ, mom to Lucy, and then everything else). I've told you this a million times but you came along at just the right time, you have been a ray of sunshine in an otherwise bleak year. You never met Granny or Granddaddy but they would have just eaten you up. They were excited that you were coming. I wish that you could have met them, but I'll tell you plenty of stories about them. You did meet Poppa and he was over the moon about you. You had watermelon tonight and I guarantee that Poppa was smiling so big. His favorite was watermelon, he'd sit around eating it our of pie tins and drinking mountain dew. I laughed t o myself tonight thinking that you are walking about as fast as Poppa did and have the same amount of teeth too, all while eating his favorite food. You won't have his favorite drink for a while though!! We'll stick with good, ole water for now.

I hope that you enjoy these letters and memoirs when you are older. I hope that when you're the most angry at me and think that I don't like you that you'll look back through these and the written letters and see just how much I love you, just how much I want what is best for you. I hope that you will
find your own path and know that Daddy and I will always love you, always. I hope that you find Jesus for yourself when the time comes. I hope that He dwells in you richly and that you find your True Hope and True Peace and True Love in Him.

Lucy, I love you more than I can ever say with words and show with actions. You are my best friend.

Always, my love, always.

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