Sunday, June 16, 2013

Dear Lemon

Dear Lemon,

On Thursday you took your first steps.  I was sitting on the chair in your nursery and your daddy stood you up, like he always does, and you stood there for a moment, the longest you have ever stood on your own before, and then you took a couple of steps and fell into my arms.  Then, you did it again and I captured it on video (I am loving the Frankenstein arms!):

I knew this moment was coming and I don't think I was really ready for it.  You were 11 months and 11 days old and it was the same day we were going to take your one year birthday pictures with June.  Your Nani came over to see you, after being gone for over a week, and you walked to her from me as well.  It was such a big day and you became such a big girl it seems, just overnight.

Did I cry?  I always thought I would when you took your first steps, I knew it would be the moment you were no longer my little baby - but tears did not come.  I am still in shock, I think, and you still don't seem really real to me.  I can't believe that two years ago I wondered if I would ever have something like you and now that I do, I can't help but be afraid that at any moment you will just vanish into thin air and be gone, taken from us without warning.  Poof!  (Start here if you are a new reader, our journey to become parents started with a loss.)

What a terrible thing to think, as a mother, but you just seem too good to be true.  I am too happy, you are too wonderful, funny, cute, curly, angelic, silly and feisty - there is no way you are all mine - forever.  But here you are, every morning when I wake up you are crawling to me on the bed, and I lay and nurse you and it is my favorite thing, to wake up to your smiling face. 

It seems like just yesterday we were bringing you home from the hospital, you were learning to nurse, rolling over, learning to sit up, learning to crawl, then standing and now walking - it's just too much.  It happens so slowly but yet so fast - only a concept a mother could understand.  Where has the time gone and where do the days go?  Where has this year gone?  When we were waiting for you it took forever but now you are here I wish I could slow it all down and stop you from growing up so fast.

When my mom, your Nani, came over and saw you walk to her she had tears in her eyes.  Later she wrote this: 
11 mos. and 11 days old....Lemon walked! I saw my granddaughter take her first shaky steps today!  Allison and my eyes met over those little blond curls to shed a few tears of pure joy...and to celebrate this little life!  The past couple of years flew by as we thought of the sometimes difficult journey to get to this awesome day. life!  Just a year ago we were waiting...waiting for this little one.  And when I held her as a newborn baby I prayed that this child would be bright, happy, healthy and we would keep her safe.  And she is...a little "Ray" of sunshine, a blond, smiling "Lemon" drop!  Little Lemon Ray Angeline, you bring us joy, hope, laughter!  You've come a long way baby and now you're on your way!  I am so thankful I did not miss this MOMENT!!!!
When she read these words to me yesterday, that is when I cried.  Moms are tough, dear Lemon, and moms have to be tough to get things done, to move on, to not dwell on the past and to be ready and prepared for anything that comes their way in the future; and they put their babies first, no matter what.  So, I am tough, I have forgotten, in a sense, all that we have been through to get here because I have been busy and this motherhood thing is hard (yes, I said it!) and I just keep moving forward and staying busy.  But when your Nani read these words to me, I remembered.

Long ago on a cold day in January, your mommy was the saddest she has ever been in her life.  I went to the hospital, was told news that would change me forever, and spent the next couple of months numb, heartbroken and sad; sadder than I have ever been in my life.  I separated herself from a lot of people - friends and family - and became vacant.  And when I found out you were coming, years later, a piece of that vacancy stayed with me and I was cautious, too afraid to care too much or get too excited because I knew just what could happen if it all got taken away from me.

So your cautious mommy went on, carried you, and then you came and I thought that when you got here everything would change and that feeling would go away.  But, it's still here and I'm still so afraid and so I don't think of it anymore and I stay busy because if I stop for even a second, to cry at your first steps, I will realize that life is fleeting and that any moment you could be gone.  This event stayed with me, little Lemon, and it has made it hard for me to believe you are really here and that you are all mine forever and ever.  Even though I know that you are.

Life isn't fair and bad things happen to good people.  Something terrible happened to our family and then something amazing happened - you.  Every day you light up my life and through all of the awesome firsts I am so proud of you.  But in the back of my mind that feeling still remains, I am still cautious.  It is hard for me to connect to these moments because I am afraid to let myself get too excited or happy just in case - I love you that much.  I am so excited, happy, totally and completely in love with you that it hurts, it is hard to feel it all at once because I am afraid.  I love you oh so much.

As I write this, tears come to my eyes.  You bring me so much joy and time has gone by way too fast.  My life seems like a movie sometimes; I am so lucky to be your mama, to have this chance at being a mother and every day I remember this.  When you've lost, baby Lemon, you know the value of winning.  It reminds me of a line from a poem:  "Success is counted sweetest by those who never succeed."  Isn't that the truth?  You are my success little girl. 

I am so proud of you baby girl, I just can't even believe that you took your first steps.  It doesn't even seem real even though I was there and saw it for myself.  You are my sunshine, you have brightened up my life, and I will hold on to you so tight forever.  I know I will write in my journal one day, like my mom did, about my grandson or granddaughter walking and I also hope I am there to see it.

I will love you forever.



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  1. I just read this, along with a couple posts about your miscarriage, and I swear it could have been me writing it. I am in tears remembering everything and crying for you. I had 2 miscarriages and now have an almost 1 year old.(I think our girls must be pretty close- 7/7) I feel the same way as you do. I am terrified that something will happen to my daughter. It took us 3 years to have her and now that we do, it doesn't feel real. I am glad you have shared your story so other women don't feel so alone. I wish more people talked about their struggles because those of us who are struggling feel so alone.

    Happy early Birthday baby girl

    1. Allison, I looove to read your posts and I totally relate with your feelings. Lemon is precious! Blesses for you and your family!

  2. I love this. As I said on IG, I think motherhood in general makes a person's just So amazing to be a mom. It's hard to wrap your head around it, actually----but do your best to soak it all in, mama.

  3. I just cried a little. I used to call my son my Little Ray Of Sunshine. I know exactly how you feel! Exactly!