I am very rarely at a loss for words. Sometimes it seems like all I have are my words. It is one of those annoying, yet totally reliable qualities about me. I always have something to say. However, on occasion, a moment arises that renders me utterly speechless. I find that, these days, those moments are almost 100% about Abigail.
I spent the week leading up to Abigail’s birthday (and party) doing a ton of talking. Talking to people making plans, talking to grocery store clerks and Costco Cake makers, talking to Abigail about her special day, talking to Anthony about all the little details he could really have not cared less about… talking, talking, talking. But when I went upstairs to check on her as she slept through the night leading up to her big day, I was given one of those rare, speechless moments.
I came in as usual, very matter-of-fact, checking the fan, the window, the night-light, and then her. Check her temperature, check her blanket, check to make sure her little arms and legs were “inside the vehicle at all times” and yes, still, check to make sure that precious little chest was going up and down to indicate that she is no longer victim to apnea symptoms. (I don’t think the fear of walking up to her bed and possibly find her not breathing will go away. Ever.) A quick kiss on the head and one last check before heading back out the door – the iHome playing her lullaby station on Pandora. For the first time in hours I see the clock and I realize that it is past midnight.
It’s here. The big day. The first normal birthday my child has had. This time two years ago, we didn’t know what our future would hold. This time last year, we were finishing a marathon and only just beginning our therapy journey. But this year… This year there was no fear. No huge obstacles in our way. No quarantines, no hospital visits, no corrected age. Just us, our closest family and friends preparing to gather in celebration, and our amazing little princess in all her typical-two-year-old glory. If ever there was an appropriate time for me to be speechless, it was that moment.
Can you believe it? This past Saturday, Abigail turned TWO!!! Where does the time go? I have never been away from her for more than one night since the day she was rushed into this world, so I have literally seen her every day of her precious little life. All 730+ days of it. I have watched her grow and morph into this amazing child with her own brain and her own (very) strong will. She has personality, smarts, and a TON of attitude. She is truly my child.
The Crunchy Numbers:
At birth, Abigail weighted 1 pound, 8 ounces. On her birthday, she weighed 24.4 pounds.
At birth, Abigail was 12 3/4 inches tall. On her birthday, she towered over that at 2′ 8.5″.
At birth through year 1, we never hit the charts for her real age. Now, we hit the 20% mark.
At birth through year 1, we had 4 or 5 Doctors, 26 nurses, 1 Social worker, and 2 therapists. Now, we have 2 doctors, 2 therapists and a Pre-School teacher.
At birth, Abby’s problems added up to more than I could count with my own fingers and toes. Today, Abby’s problem is Speech, which even then, we are making steady progress with.
At birth, we had a 25% shot at survival. She was the 1 in 4. Today, she abuses that tiny little body of hers, pushing it to the outer limits, insistent upon being the first human to defy gravity. And trust me she has the scraped up knees, goose eggs on the head, bruises on the arms, and smile on the face to prove it.
I tell ya, folks. There is no stopping this kid. The forces of nature are going to bow to her someday.
So, in celebration of coming so far, we had as normal a birthday party as I could throw for her. She is OBSESSED with bubbles these days. They are her ultimate favorite. So we threw a Bubble themed pool party in our backyard. We had pizza (her favorite food), we had cake, we had fun bubble stations, and plenty of water fun. We even had a pinata! Gotta instill those Mexican roots early. 😉
She was so happy all day. She loved the bubble machine that cranked out thousands of bubbles in her honor. But the highlight of her day, by and large, was the tiny blue kiddie pool I bought. I wanted to make giant bubbles in it, but the solution failed me. So we dumped it out and filled it with water. I turned around to call Abigail over to show her, and in the split second it took for me to realize she’d already seen it, she jumped right in… with her clothes on!!!! Oh well. She was happy, so I didn’t care.
It was an amazing party. We had SUCH a good time! I loved every minute of it.
I still can’t believe she’s 2. Mainly because it makes me reflect on the past two years and how quickly it has passed. For two years, I feel like all I’ve had are my words. All I’ve had are extraordinary stories. I’ve had crazy tirades, semi-profound words of wisdom, and tons and tons of tear-worthy triumphs. But this year is different. This year, all I’ve got is this giant ball of energy running through my house screaming at the top of her lungs. All I have is this smile and infectious laugh that I swear could sustain entire continents of they could bottle the stuff. All I have is the aftermath of one pretty awesome party, more gifts than should be showered on one child, and the knowledge that I’m a “normal” Mom these days.
All I have is an incredible miracle. All I have is, very simply, my Abigail.
Happy 2nd Birthday, Baby girl! I love you more than you’ll ever know!
Abigail on her 2nd Birthday. (June 2, 2012)