Monday, April 13, 2015

I remember.

One year ago tonight, I wrote THIS blog post.  I remember being so, so anxious and wishing the clock would move a little faster.  We were being admitted to the hospital at midnight to begin induction and that day crawled by.  I remember sitting on my couch after I posted to the blog, posting my #keveryday - where I posted this photo:

I remember being so nervous.  I'm a details person, and the details of parenting are absent.  There is no schedule.  There are no real rules.  There's no instruction manual.  I remember asking other mommy friends about their day-to-day schedules, things I should know, products I needed to have, advice I couldn't live without.

I remember walking into the hospital and seeing all the sweet newborn things - the bassinet, the warmer, the footprint stuff

And then I remember thinking, "Holy hell.  In a few hours, a baby will be laying in there.  Not just A baby...MY baby"

I remember taking this one last photo of Julie pregnant - and being oddly emotional because I knew it was the end of something really, really incredible that she and I shared.  Every single week she sent me a picture.  Every week.  Never missed one.  And this was the last one I would take.  It was so surreal.

I remember Dan, Julie and I trying our hardest to get some sleep that night - even though I'm not sure any of us really slept.  I remember us entertaining ourselves for most of the day that day.  I remember sweet Julie and her incredible husband, Dan taking lap after lap after lap around the labor and delivery floor trying to get that baby out.  I remember the sweet sound of the lullaby that plays at the hospital every time a baby is born.

I remember making bets on when she would be born and how big she would be {Kaitlyn won.}

I remember the nurses telling us it was finally time.  I remember numbly walking into the bathroom to change into my gown so I could do skin-to-skin with her immediately.  I remember things moving in super-speed.  I remember squeezing Julie's hand as she pushed.  I remember the doctor saying, "are we expecting a baby with lots and lots of dark hair?" and thinking in that second, that was the first physical feature I knew for sure about my child...she had lots of dark hair.

Then I remember time freezing in this moment

7:28 pm on April 14, 2014.  I remember being so, unbelievably thankful that she was here.  That she was healthy.  And that she was our's.  I remember wondering how possibly I lived 30 years of my life without her.

I remember handing my phone to Kevin and asking him to snap this picture of me and worrying that I would look hideous :)

I usually hate pictures of myself.  But this one is probably my favorite of all time.  I'm not sure I have ever been more overjoyed.  Just absolute, pure, unbridled happiness.

I remember she was screaming like it was her job.  Mad as a hornet.  She wasn't having it.  At all.  And I remember thinking, "oh boy - this is gonna be fun in the middle of the night" {for the record, she still has this same temper when she's really mad}

I remember them wrapping her up and handing her to Kevin and when I turned around, I saw this

And I remember thinking, "I've never been more in love with this man in all my life."

I remember introducing Kamdyn to her sister and feeling so grateful that Kaitlyn's mom agreed to bring her back to the hospital so late on a school night

And I remember Kaitlyn stopping what she was doing, running over to Julie laying in bed and saying "thank you for my sister" {insert ugly cry}

I remember thinking "ohmygosh - this is our first picture as a family of 4"

I remember handing Kamdyn to Julie for the first time and watching with tears in my eyes as I realized that everything I ever worried about before she was born about her relationship with Julie or whether she would know I was her mama, or whether I would immediately love her since I didn't give birth to her - all of those fears were for nothing.  In this moment...

In that moment, as I watched my daughter laying in the arms of the woman who brought her into this world, the ONLY thing I felt was love.  I knew in that moment that Julie's family and our's were going to be forever-family.  And that Kamdyn would know and celebrate the way she was brought into this world because we would encourage and facilitate a close relationship and bond between Kamdyn and them - all 6 of them.

I remember her looking up at me when I was taking this picture and locking eyes with her.  And in that single instant, I knew she stole my heart.

I remember her first bath that night.  I remember all of her hair.  And then I remember putting a bow on that little head - two hours old and wearing her first bow :)

I remember being so worried I would forget the details.  I remember making Dan promise that he would take lots of pictures so I wouldn't forget in the craziness of the day.  I remember thinking "I really should blog tonight" but being so exhausted and smitten with her that I just couldn't.

I remember so many details from that day.

And tonight, as I laid my baby down for her last sleep before she turns one tomorrow, I held her with tears streaming down my face, silently thanking God for the past 364 days with her.  Thanking God that he has been faithful in His gentle reminders to slow down and enjoy these sweet days with her.  Thanking Him that I still have so much to look forward to in her life.  Thanking God for the countless times that he has lovingly nudged me to be thankful, even when it's hard - even when she's crabby, even when I'm sick, even when I'm out of patience - He has patiently laid on my heart time and time again that she is the answer to every prayer I prayed and I will never get this day with her again.

Tomorrow, my sweet baby turns ONE.  I'll be back tomorrow with a birthday post - but tonight, I'm just reflecting on the single greatest year of our lives.  Thanks for praying with and for us, friends - and thanks for continuing to follow our little family.  We are blessed by you.

xoxo -

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