Unexpected Blessings: April 2011

Friday, April 1, 2011

Dear Augusta

So I pulled out Augusta’s baby book last night. Confession: she’s four months old and I am just now starting it. I’ve had good intentions. I have a “memory box” full of mementos I’ve collected since her birth – her wristband from the hospital, her birth announcement, First Christmas cards, newborn photos, and little odds and ends. But actually starting the baby book? It’s an item on my to-do list that is just now getting checked off.

As I sat on Augusta’s bedroom floor and flipped through the blank pages, the headings brought tears to my eyes. Visitors from the hospital. Photos of my baby shower. About Mommy and Daddy. First smile. Look how I’ve grown. I could picture in my mind exactly what I’m going to write and what pictures I’m going to use. I glanced down at Augusta on the floor next to me. Her big, blue eyes looked up at me as if to say, “Hi Mommy!” I thought to myself, “How do I begin to capture her cuteness in a book?” Then I turned to a page that has a little envelope glued to it. The heading – “Letter from Mommy.”

I was stumped. How in the world do I write a letter to Augusta that has everything I want to say? Where do I begin? How can I even start to explain the depth of my love for her? Do I tell her how much Ryan and I hoped and prayed for her? Do I tell her about the car wreck when I was nine months pregnant – and the guardian angel that must have been with us that day? Or do I share the little moments that mean so much – like cuddling when I get home from work, our nightly bubble bath where she burrows up on my chest, reading books while she and Maverick are nestled in my lap. Do I tell her what her favorites are right now like getting her hair brushed, licking the noses of her stuffed animals, and watching Maverick play with his cars? Do I explain that she’s special in a way that a shooting star is or a rainbow is after it rains? Do I tell her my hopes and dreams for her future? Do I assure her she can do whatever her heart desires and not to listen to anyone who tells her differently?

I know in my heart the answers to all of these questions. I want Augusta to know how much we love her and how she has opened our eyes to the beauty in this world. I’m nervous about writing such a powerful letter. It’s a way to record a piece of her history – a keepsake she’ll have forever. So here it goes. Oh, you might be wondering why I’m going to share such a personal message to my daughter with all of you. And this is why – I want the world to see Augusta as I see her – a beautiful little girl who has so many abilities and so much potential. I want the world to appreciate the beauty of our differences. I want the world to erase the stereotypes and ignorance and appreciate her for the wonderful little being God created. So open your heart and read carefully...

Dear Augusta,

I love you more than words can say. When God gave us you, He filled a place in my heart that I didn’t even know was empty. I am so blessed He chose me to be your mom. From even before you were born, I’ve loved you. I was scared at first, but I knew from the moment I looked in your eyes, I would do anything in the world to protect you. That is how much I love you.

At just four months old, you have changed my life and given me a purpose. With every “first” you have, I know I am in the presence of a miracle. Your first smile, your first roll from tummy to back, your first coo, and your first pedicure. (Yes, you and mommy got a pedicure together when you were just three months old.) Every moment like this is never taken for granted. The way your tiny hand grasps my finger. How when you smile your eyes squint into crescent moons. The way you kiss your Daddy and snuggle into his neck. And how you watch your brother wide-eyed as he plays with his cars. The way you coo at me when I’m brushing your tiny locks of hair and how you lick the noses on your stuffed animals. Because of you, I slow down, take a breath, and never take one moment for granted.

And just when I think life couldn’t get any sweeter, there’s a moment like the one I had this morning with you and Maverick nestled on my lap for a story. Or the moment you master one of your therapy exercises and your big brother yells, “Good job Gus!” The first few minutes when you wake up and you’re just stretching your arms out and gazing up at me while you nurse. The time each evening where we just spend snuggling, you burrowed into my neck. It’s moments like these that have changed me. They change the way I look at the world. The things that used to stress me out are just shrugged aside because all that matters is that we have each other.

You may be just a baby as I write this, but I have so many hopes and dreams for your future. Please know that you can do anything, absolutely anything your heart desires. Whether it’s playing the piano, doing gymnastics, or kicking a soccer ball, please know that your daddy, brother, and I will be cheering you on every step of the way. You are going to have hard times, challenging times, and times that almost get the best of you. But Augusta, know this. You can, will, and have overcome them. You are strong, I know this. Whatever cruelty, hardship, or prejudice you face, know in your heart that you are above that. I pray in my heart that you will never have to live one day without me...but if you do, please remember that you are never alone. There are so many people who love you and will fight for you every second of every day.

But even though there may be times that try your soul, I want you to know that there is good in this world. I want you to find beauty wherever you look. And with you, that’s never far. I want you to live a life full of love and laughter. A life that makes you feel complete. A life you can be proud of. I know in my heart, a life like this is possible because you are already living it. I am so proud of you Augusta and I am honored to be your mom.

With all my love,

Copyright © 2011 Kristan.