The day you were born was undoubtedly the day I truly started living. You were so tiny, so perfect, so unbelievable to me. I remember bringing you home from the hospital all wrapped up in your little white blanket. I remember thinking how tiny you were when I would lay you on my shoulder and your little legs would stop at about where my elbows were. Now, when you lay your head on my shoulder, we both have a hard time trying to figure out where to put the rest of you - it's so unreal to me to watch you grow.
Over the last six years, you've been my one constant source of laughter, joy, and love.
Sometimes, it really does feel like yesterday to me that you were rubbing sweet potatoes in your hair in your high chair and singing the "Twintle Twintle little Tar" at the very top of your lungs. I can still vividly see that little one tooth, nose scrunched up, neck stuck out grin of yours and your baby hair standing straight up in every direction on the top of your head.
In my mind, you'll forever be frozen at 3 years old in a Princess Costume spinning around in circles in our living room.
I can almost feel your hands on both my cheeks and your forehead on mine and hear you say "I love you, that's the first thing you know..."
I've loved every minute of you, so far - and life with you only gets better. It's almost mind blowing to me how much of a little lady you are becoming... you're beginning to lose all those baby teeth. Your hair has thickened up significantly. Twinkle Twinkle Little Star somehow became a baby song... and the last time I heard you talk about princesses, you were asking your Daddy about battles involving Princess Leia. She's no Ariel, but I'll take what I can get.
This year, I have loved watching your little mind figure things out. Kindergarten has opened up a whole new world of possibilities to you. I love to listen to you read and figure out new words. I can't believe that you know more about Beethoven and Bach than I do. I've witnessed compassion and love in you that I would give anything to possess within myself. I love your giving spirit and your open mind - I hope you never ever lose them. I'm amazed at how much you have taught me.
I hope that you know with unwaivering certaintly how completely loved you are, not only by me - but by so many. Since the day you were born, you've been the brightest light in your Grandbubba's world. I'm so thankful for the loving bond that the two of you share. It's the most amazing thing that I have ever witnessed. Sooner than we'd like, she's going to lose a 3+ year battle with cancer and go home to Heaven to see her husband and her family - and although she won't be here anymore, I know that she won't ever be gone... because I see SO much of her in you.
Before you know it, you will have a new baby brother here to love. I have really enjoyed all of your help these last few months. You're so eager to get everything ready and to make sure that I am taken care of- and if that is any indication of how life will be after Raleigh's arrival, I know that you are going to be a wonderful big sister.
With all these big changes in your life coming at you so fast - I can't help but wonder how you are going to take them in. I know how resilient you are and I am confident that you will do beautifully.
I can't wait to see what tomorrow with you brings.
I love you, that's the first thing you know,