* Yes, I realize I’m using her real name. I want to bind these letters together someday and am too lazy to have to go back and change them all..Most of you know her “real” name anyway…
There’s so much you aren’t told when you are about to become a mother, so much that’s not mentioned in Your Pregnancy Week by Week or Parents magazine.
For instance, no one ever mentioned that I would remember every last detail within the 24 hours before your birth.
Like how tired I was at work that day. Like how I hardly ate a thing when I had been clearing almost six meals a day the weeks prior. Like how I almost fell asleep in the tub while your daddy was at a business meeting to “seal the deal” that eventually took us to a new city.
I went to bed feeling a bit crampy but figured they were just those silly Braxton-Hicks’ contractions again – you weren’t supposed to arrive for another two weeks.
Daddy came home and was abuzz with the excitement of the possibility of a new partnership. He fell asleep at midnight.
An hour later, you thought you might want to let us know it was time.
Excited and scared, I took a shower while your father tried to rid the cobwebs from his eyes.
It was indeed time.
The suitcase had been packed, the calls were made and we got into the car.
And I was terrified.
Twelve hours later, I met you for the first time and I can still recall what you looked like, sounded like, smelled like, and even tasted like when I realized my heart would forever reside on the outside of my chest for the rest of my time on this earth.
And it has.
You, my eldest child. I love you all the same amount but I love you all so differently.
You, my “paver-of-the-way.” You, a girl so much like me I’m frightened at times yet enough of your own person, too. You who loves things that sparkle, who loves to pretend and act like the “character du jour” (Yoshi, puppies, Rudolph, Brittany the Chipette). You, who loves books, to create, to write.
Yes. You love to write.
You don’t love the physical act of writing. In fact, as a lefty, that’s a little difficult for you right now.
It’s the stories you love to write. The ideas. The images set to “words” that spew from your little mind.
The illustrations you create.
The intensity in which you work on a “project”.
There’s probably no use in hiding from it – I’m suspecting you’ve inherited your mama’s love of words.
The greatest gift and the greatest curse. More on that later.
For now let’s just focus on the little girl you are right at this moment – the one who sparkles, whose lilting laughter echos through a house of testosterone, whose presence keeps those younger two brothers “in-line” but also laughing.
Two brothers who adore you, who run excitedly to the door when you get home from school, who go along with your grandiose plans of pretend universes.
I’ve seen so much change in you this past year – even as I write this, my heart twinges. I know this fast-forward button of time is inevitable – I can’t make it stop though, trust me, I would do anything to do so.
It’s bittersweet for I know this is something I have to do – to start to let you go. I don’t ever want to release you and just so you know, you have a mama that won’t ever. Fully.
For you reside in such a large piece of my heart that I will not be able to turn-off the “mama button” when you “go to college” as you like to say.
I’m sorry but you didn’t get that kind of mommy.
Perhaps what I have enjoyed the most during this past year is watching you grow to love God even more and embrace and love music about Him. You adore Casting Crowns. They are most certainly your favorite yet you also love Mercy Me, JJ Heller, Toby Mac.
You are an ardent fan of K-Love and enjoy sharing all of the stories they tell in between songs. “Mommy, I heard on K-Love…” is the start of many of your sentences these days.
Your heart. Oh, Sarah. Your heart.
The other day, we were in a minor traffic accident in our neighborhood and you were so concerned about the person who hit the back of us. You wanted to make him some lemonade so “he would feel better.”
At the still-tender age of six, I am seeing you understand the connection between faith and works even more than most people ten times your age.
Not to mention you are a faithful deliverer of the gospel to the children in your somewhat-liberal Montessori Kindergarten – I get reports now and then about those who believe in Jesus. The other day you told me of someone “who believes in Hanukkah.”
To have no inhibitions about talking to anyone about Jesus? To not read a book about apologetics or a magazine article on how to engage people in faith discussions and just do it?
You serve as a model to us all, dear one.
Of course, Daddy and I did have to tone you down a bit recently when you wanted to take your Bible for sharing basket and read the story of how Satan tempted Jesus. You were “on fire” to tell your classmates about the enemy and we had to intervene a bit and suggest you might want to start off with a more subtle approach. Thankfully, you listened but your brothers certainly sat with wide-eyes as you shared the story with them that very evening.
I know I’m hard on you sometimes. I’m not really sure why this is – you are my only daughter and you are beyond precious to me. The only thing I can think of is that I am so flawed and this job I’ve been entrusted with is really just so massive.
Sometimes I cave under the pressure of it all. Sometimes I yell and scream and say things I shouldn’t and get angry over things that are so miniscule it shouldn’t even register.
And yet it does. And I always, always, every single night pray that God will protect you from me. That He is indeed gently leading me, one who has young, so that my sins of anger won’t impact generations. (Isaiah 40:11)
You forgive me every time.
Like someone else I know.
It is one of my four greatest pleasures in life – to be your mom. When I once dreamed of having a little girl, you far exceed that little being I envisioned.
It is a joy to mother you, sweet Sissy Sue. An absolute joy and an absolute honor.
I close this letter with the words I speak over you at the end of each day: I love you, always, always. There is nothing you could ever do that would make me not love you and you are fearfully and wonderfully made just how you are right at this moment.
To say I love you? Talk about putting it mildly. The intensity of my love for you can’t even be expressed in those three words.
I love you. I adore you. I’m so thankful, thankful, thankful for you. Happy Sixth Birthday, beauty.