Sunday, August 19, 2012
Last Friday my sweet baby completed her first full rotation around the sun - S is one year old! This is crazy and I am not exactly sure how it happened. I have heard that the second child grows up faster than the first and I think in some ways this is true. At least it is for me. With J we waited patiently and sometimes anxiously for the firsts to appear - first words, first steps, first everything. With S perhaps she has hit some of those firsts a little sooner than her sister (after all she has someone to pursue!) but also we're too busy to do anything but marvel at her when she does. It's a good thing.
We rang in her first year in style. I'm not normally one for big shenanagins when it come to birthday parties that someone won't remember. For J we did something quite small and low-key. But I have felt bad that we never did a welcome party for S, there are no photos of our friends singing lullabies to her and so forth. As a second-born child myself I feel honor bound to make sure that my second child is as celebrated as my first, even if it is at different times and in different ways. So we had a big fun first birthday for S at the family homestead - the land that Andrew's great-grandfather purchased in the 1940's that has housed birthday parties of all sorts for his family for generations. Andrew's dad lives there now and we feel like it is a second home for us.
We finished off the birthday weekend with a family feast at home - the girls' Papa and Grandma Nancy came up for the party (some of my folks) and we grilled leftover hamburgers with them and my brother's family and then took all the kids to the park.
All throughout yesterday and today I felt hyper-aware of the immense web of love and support that we rest in: my girls, my guy, and me. I've said it before but it is this love and care - the people who I can trust with my girls and who understand in some way or another the terrible vulnerability that comes with being a parent and take some step to love on us and let us know that we're not ever alone in this - this is a big part, maybe the biggest part, of the richness I bring to my kids' lives. We're not ever going to be financially rich - they won't get cars when they turn sixteen or trust funds when they turn twenty one. But they will never be unloved. They will never stumble without someone to stretch out an arm. They don't have perfect parents, lord knows, but they've got so much more than just us. I love this about my life.
Happy birthday my sweet sunshine girl. You are an amazing surprise and every day I thank God and the universe that I get to be one of the people who parents you.