Even though it is a couple of months late, I still want to write my daughter on her first birthday. As you can see, having 2 littles has made life crazy but full of joy!
After waiting for months that often felt like years, the day finally came for us to welcome you into our family. You were born with eyes wide open and as silent as the first hours of morning. Such a contrast already to your brother who cried for the first hour of his life. Since then, you have been anything but silent, and you still take in every detail of life with wide eyes and infinite curiosity.
The first few months were rough. For us and for you. Still, we persevered together and thanked the Lord for caffeine and the ability to act like we knew what we were doing. We have loved getting to know you this last year and discovering all the ways you are fearfully and wonderfully made by our God. You are stubborn and feisty. You can be a Mama's girl but some days you just want your Daddy. Above all, you adore Austin, or "Bubba," as you call him. Your little face lights up as you say his name over and over when he walks into the room.
You know what you like and dislike. You hold to your opinions without wavering, and one day I'll be thankful for that trait. For now, there is molding to be done and we need every ounce of God's wisdom and grace to be the parents you deserve. You challenge us and force us out of our comfort zones. God is using you to teach me the importance of letting go of perfection and the crazy idea that I can do any of this life on my own.
I cherish so many moments with you. Rocking you to sleep while you hold tight to your paci and favorite monkey. Playing peek-a-boo and chase. Watching you play with your brother and love on him. But perhaps my most favorite moments are when you snuggle close and pat my shoulder. In those precious seconds, I know firsthand the blessing of the mother/daughter bond and pray that we are always close.
Before you were born, God told me that you would be our "joy that comes in the morning." I had no idea then that that theme would be woven throughout the first year of your life. We have spent many hours on our knees in prayer for dear family and friends. Asking God for miracles. Believing His promise that after the night comes the dawn and with it...JOY! We have been reminded that in this world, we will have trouble but He has overcome the world!
You are our joy, Brooke. Our tangible proof that God is faithful and full of blessings for His children even when the storms surround us. When you face the ups and downs of this life, remember this part of your story! Remember that when you hold tight to Jesus, you can face anything with supernatural strength, grace, and Heavenly focus.
I never want to forget the little things about this season. How you laugh when you put your brother's swimming shorts on your head. The way you dance when any kind of music is playing or how you say "Awwww" when you hug us. I love how you scrunch up your little face and with squinted eyes, you let us know you're disgusted. These moments are fleeting and a reminder that ultimately you are on loan from our Heavenly Father. Be patient with us as we learn to let go in different ways and never forget that you are one of our treasures. We love you, sweet girl!!