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To my daughter on her first birthday

Posted Mar 05 2013 12:00am

Sweet baby girl of mine,

Words have not yet been invented that can define how I feel about you. Without a doubt, you are the most incredibe gift that this world has ever received; That I could never expect. You are the most amazing creature on the planet, which each parent probably feels, but they should.

Each child should enter this world being the most amazing thing that happened to someone.

This year has been full of ups and downs, as the first year always is. The beginning was difficult, and I am not talking about the physical birth. You were, as I expected, born almost on the day of my mom – your grandmother’s – 3rd anniversary of her passing.

Your birthday will forever be intertwined with her deathday. I will forever be reflecting upon both simultaneously, perhaps even more than I would have otherwise.

But don’t feel bad, my marvel. You gave me a gift that no one else would have ever been able to give me: A new perspective of my mother. One that, had you never been born, I would have never had. And for that, my marvel, I thank you.

As you lay your head on my shoulder when you are sad or feeling bad, I am transported 35 years back to when I was the baby, and I can see my mother doing the same. When I feel my heart explode with emotion for you, I suddenly understand so much of how my mother treated me and how she must have felt.

When I felt down, and not good enough for you, I missed my mom so much, wondering if she felt the same way, because if she did, not only does that mean I was normal, but that it’s possible to pull yourself out of the abyss and become a great parent who is completely in love with her child.

Because I am. I am a good mother to you. I wonder who you will be when you are older, but focus on who you are now. You are so funny. I don’t think there has been one day in the past 6 months that you haven’t made me laugh at least once. My phone has no more space for pictures, because everything you do is the funniest thing that any child has ever done.

I love my job. I love what I do and (most of) the people I work with, and while I am thrown into work each morning, all I do all day is wait to come home to you.

This feeling never ceases to surprise me. My entire pregnancy and labor, I could not fathom how I could possibly love someone with such intensity as I love your father. And yet, here you are, proof that it’s completely possible, though completely different.

Every morning I think I couldn’t possibly love you more, and every evening I am proven wrong.  And I can’t help but believe that my mother felt the same way, and that gives me so much comfort.

I write you these words for two reasons. First, we don’t know what will happen later. If, by some tragedy, you are left in the same position I am in, I want you to know precisely how I felt about you. This is also part of why I wrote about my postpartum depression . But most importantly, in about 5 minutes you will be a teenager. You may be angry with me or your father. You may think we are setting too many limits or don’t care about you. But none of that is true.

This letter is a testament to how I feel about you now, and how I will, no doubt, feel about you until my last breath.

Because you are my marvel, just as I was my mom’s.

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