Saturday, December 18, 2010

Three Weeks Early and One Day Late

     Eight December's ago, Marty and I were awaiting the arrival of our first child. The day after Christmas we were lying in bed, just waking up. Our baby girl would be here in 3 weeks! We were so looking forward to meeting her. I began to sing to Marty's tummy as I had many times before, "Be My Baby," and then followed it up with "I'm Coming Out," which I would sing when I wanted her on the outside. Much to our surprise, she obeyed that morning. On December 26, 2002, three weeks early, our baby girl Julia was born, and a love switch I didn't know I had inside me was flipped on!
     The first time I left her in the nursery at the hospital the day she was born, I just cried. I looked at her through the thick glass and felt the separation. She was only hours old, but leaving her already felt like she was going off to college or I was giving her away at her wedding. I didn't want to go. I had only met her that day, but it hurt to walk away from her.
     For her eighth birthday we suggested she have a slumber party. She could invite three guests (all we can handle for an overnighter at this point), and she invited her best friend from pre-school, her best friend from Kindergarten and a girl in her current class that she has grown close to. Julia is a great friend maker and keeper. Marty bought some make-up for them to get a light makeover for the evening, then we'll take them to dinner and the 8 year old girls will sit at their own table, order whatever they want, laugh and giggle over 2nd grade stuff, come back and watch a movie and sleep in the living room.
     I have never seen Julia so excited. She cannot stop talking about her party and planning. She has made lists of things they can do. She's asked if any of the girls get a little nervous about sleeping in the living room, can they transfer to her bedroom. She has graciously included her little sister in her birthday party plans, and she has expressed adequately that she cannot wait for her slumber party.
     I love seeing her so happy. I love her. She is an exceptional kid, as all my children are. I can't believe our baby girl is growing up so quickly. For some reason, this slumber party is making her seem so grown up. And soon, I will be waving to her as she drives away, car packed, college bound, and then waving to her her as she drives away with the man I've entrusted her to. God help me.
     So I'm remembering a December from 8 years ago when our first born child became the best Christmas present we ever received, three weeks early and one day late.

1 comment:

erika hamm said...

I heard about this on Thursday when I got to see Marty and the girls!! I asked her if she was more excited for her party than for Christmas, and she shrugged not wanting to admit that she probably was. =). I hope she has a blast!! I definitely want to hear how it goes!! Happy Birthday Julia!!!