I was telling Mike this morning that birthdays are special for lots of reasons other than the obvious celebrating of a new life being born into this world. Matthew, by virtue of his conception and birth, made me a mother and Mike a father. Mike’s mom, dad, and step-mom became grandparents for the first time, and his grandparents became great-grandparents for the first time. With Adelaide’s debut, Matthew became a big brother.
We were blessed with new roles and relationships when both Matthew and Adelaide were born. With Matthew’s birth, I felt like we were, for the first time, a real family. Adelaide’s birth magnified that feeling beyond measure.
Before Adelaide came along, I couldn’t imagine loving another child as much as Matthew, and I was worried about whether or not Adelaide and I would have as strong an attachment as her big brother and I have. Many people told me not to worry, that with Adelaide’s birth my heart would grow and that there would be plenty enough love for the both of them.
But that’s not quite what I experienced. With Adelaide’s birth, it didn’t feel like my heart grew to make room for Adelaide. Instead, it felt like God gave me a second heart, another heart whole and new and full of love just for my baby girl. And that’s how it feels for each love in my life, like I have an entire heart full of love just for that person, no sharing necessary.
I could never have imagined how much our lives would change with the addition of a second child to our family. We are busier than ever with the simple tasks of day-to-day living, learning, loving, playing, exploring, and discovering. Matthew and Adelaide, being the two different people they are, have different wants, needs, and interests that are often competing. It’s not easy, but that’s not a requirement for us.
So much has come and gone in our lives this last year, and today, for the first time, I think I’m okay with that. I’ve had to let many things go, but my family is so very, very worth it.
This is my birthday gift to you, Adelaide:
Today, I am letting go of all of the regrets and unrealized dreams. The hopes and dreams I have now are far better than I could ever have imagined. I am a wife. I am a mother. I dedicate my life to doing something beautiful for God, to serving Him by loving and serving my family. I promise to do whatever I can to make the world a better place by celebrating and supporting life, families, and children–the most precious of God’s blessings.
Happy birthday, Adelaide! I love you!