Today was a very happy day for us.
Daddy and your brothers and sisters woke us up early this morning ...you and I were still curled up in bed next to each other and half asleep when we heard that chorus of voices singing "Happy Birthday to Mommy!"
We had a nice day together, and everyone spoiled me so much. I felt like a queen the way your daddy and siblings took care of me...I am so blessed.
You had your very first ISFP meeting today. Karen, your therapist, and two other therapists came to go over your progress with us for the last year. I was really amazed, as we looked back, at how many goals you met this year.
I remember a year ago when Karen first came...
I was so new to having a baby with Down syndrome- I remember feeling a little shocked that we were setting goals for your first year such as "sitting independently" or "creeping" or "dropping objects into a target". These were tasks your older brothers and sisters had accomplished their first year without any help or thought on my part...
I remember feeling overwhelmed at the thought that now I was responsible for helping you reach these goals. Nothing could be taken for granted anymore- and that idea scared me a little bit. I really had no idea that Down syndrome meant physical limitations- in my limited pre-Lily perspective, Ds was something that cause cognitive delays, not physical.
I never knew that low muscle tone or loose joints was something that came with your extra chromosome. I never knew that something as simple as standing for a length of time was something children with Down syndrome had to work on...I don't know how I never knew any of this, as your Grammi worked in special education for much of my childhood. Somehow I missed all the physical limitations her students had; I never knew how hard they were working just to do the simple every-day things I did without any effort.
As we talked today about all the goals you've met, my mind went back to the first day you held your head up off the floor for several seconds, and how we all cheered and sent the video of it to all our friends and loved ones. One little victory that we tucked away in our hearts, a harbinger of good things to come..
...or when you reached for Daddy's face for the first time. Who would have ever thought "reaching" was a milestone to be celebrated, cheered for, to cry happy tears over...but it was...
I remember how exciting it was when you started developing an interest in toys. You were no longer content to sit and chew your fingers; you reached for and held up and inspected each toy with careful thought, even preferring your sun toy above all the others. This simple act of "choice" was so beautiful to me- you had desires, you demonstrated determination and personality...and it thrilled my soul...
We've grown a lot this past year, sweetest Lily.
We've watched you work so hard and overcome so much, and the joy that comes from knowing just how far you've come is irreplaceable.
*your beloved therapist, Karen...
So as we head into this second year, with all its golden promise, I just want to tell you how very proud I am of you, Lily Anne.
You are all that is pure and lovely and holy and good, and I am so very honored to be your mama.
Thank you for making my birthday the best ever, simply by being you.
P.S. Thank you to all of the wonderful people who sent me birthday wishes and voted for Lily...she is NUMBER ONE right now! Please keep voting until March 6th, when this week's photo contest ends... you can vote every day!
The best present of the day yesterday? Jason and Naomi got approved through their adoption agency!!! I would love to be able to give them that prize money to help them...please, will you spread the word for just a few more days?
Here is the link to vote :
and thank you for making my birthday wish come true:)