precious, precious laney james. i absolutely canNOT believe that you turn one today. as much as it feels like this year flew by, at the same time it seems as though you've been with us forever.
it amazes me to think that this time last year, we had no idea if you were a boy or a girl. it really amazes me to think of how many chances i had to find out and chose not to. ;-)
you are your momma's girl through and through. there's a part of me that thinks that your attachment to me may be attributed to the fact that we didn't find out your gender before you were born. (and let it be noted that for future babies (God willing) we will absolutely, positively find out the gender!) while i was pregnant with libbi, we knew she was a girl and we named her early on. we spent the remainder of the pregnancy calling her by name, monogramming her things, and dreaming and planning what she would be like. when she was born, i felt like i already knew her. and as a new mom, that was a comforting feeling.
with you, things were different. we didn't know your name, your gender, or have anything planned and waiting for you. there were a lot of tentative plans and lists, but nothing set in stone until after you arrived. i loved being pregnant and feeling a baby move and kick was just as exciting the second time around as it was the first. but, if i'm being honest, while i loved you already, i didn't feel like i knew you just yet. and even though i thought you were a boy, when i heard the doctor say, "it's a girl!" i wasn't the least bit surprised. i thought you were a boy, but i knew in my heart i was meant to have a daughter. meeting you for the first time was a beautiful moment that i'll never forget. it was my first time holding you, calling you by name, seeing your sweet face, and knowing without a doubt that you were mine. i could feel it. we were connected
when libbi was born, it was a shock to my system, for sure. and honestly, it took me a good six months or so to be comfortable with my new role of being a mom. i loved libbi with every ounce of my being, but learning how to be a mom, while balancing that with being a wife, a friend, a sister, and a daughter was hard! when you were born, i felt like my confidence in myself and my abilities as a mom were so much greater and while i still didn't have all the answers, this time - i knew i didn't have to.
i feel as though we've spent this year learning about each other. your daddy and i have been learning how to parent two children. (daddy has been learning more about little girls than i'm sure he ever dreamed he would - haha!) libbi has been learning how to be a big sister and (reluctantly) how to share the spotlight. and we're all still learning the dynamics of our family of four. while some days we operate like a well oiled machine, there are still those days where i wonder how we made it home in one piece :)
adding another baby to our family this past year has been beautifully, wonderfully hard and yet seamless all at the same time. looking back, i know that i worried about how libbi would feel not being "the only" anymore. she was my first baby and i worried that she would have a hard time not being my only baby anymore. i can absolutely, positively say that from the second you were born, i have never given that a second thought. there is nothing i love more than seeing the two of you together. knowing that you are not just sisters, but friends for life. my heart is full.
laney james, you have changed our family for the better. you have made us more mindful of being present with each other. you have helped us to rely on each and on other members of our family for help when we've needed it. you've made us laugh and cry and everything in between and we wouldn't change one second of it. we love you with all of our hearts laylay and we are praying that you will do BIG things in your life.
happy first birthday baby girl!