That's Me

That's Me

Friday, November 16, 2012

Happy Birthday, Blondie!

My Blondie, or #3 as she's also known in our family, turned 13 yesterday. Half the kids in my house are teenagers now. Man, that happened way too fast!
That's the 2 of us, exactly 1 year ago today.
She was 1 day old.

13 years ago at this moment I was holding my new baby girl, in awe of how in love I could be at such a brand-new person. Again.

With each child, I spent the first week staring at them in wonder at how I could be that in love with someone & how awesome it feels to be that in love.

I was also dealing with Amazing Grace who had just turned 3 & Boy Teenager who was 21 months. Amazing Grace was beyond excited to have a new baby doll to play with, one that actually cried & poo'ed & wiggled when she got dressed. She was definitely in love.
First family photo, taken 1 hour after birth.
Amazing Grace wouldn't stop staring at the
little baby. Boy Teenager is not happy to
share his Mommy. (Ignore that random arm
in the photo...just some person.) 

"If I ignore it will it go away?"
Boy Teenager...not so much. These pictures taken when Blondie was 2 days old, show exactly how Boy Teenager felt at the time.

"No, I will NOT be sitting closer to
that thing. Amazing Grace is a
traitor & I want my Mama to  myself!"
Thankfully Boy Teenager got over it after only 2 weeks & accepted that she was there to stay. Today he is very protective of each of his sisters & has proven many times he will not let anyone take advantage of Blondie's sweet spirit & giving heart.

This perfectly depicts
My 2 oldest girls, inseparable
since the beginning.
Amazing Grace still has that incredible bond with Blondie. Their relationship is something I actually envy at times. I would have loved to be that close to a sister when I was growing up. They sneak into each other's rooms late at night to talk about whatever is on their minds & feel each other's pain, sadness, happiness, & joy.

When Amazing Grace was in the hospital way too many times this spring & summer, Blondie was so worried she was literally sick. The other kids were also worried about their sister of course, but Blondie has a life line with Amazing Grace that you just don't often see between siblings. She could't function...she could't breath...when she didn't know what was going on with Amazing Grace. These 2 would do anything for each other & on the rare occasion one of them is sick, the other crawls into bed with her & won't leave her side. It's beautiful to see.

They definitely weren't always like this. There was a period of time when I was telling all my friends, "Don't have 3 kids. Just don't. Go from 2 to 4 or stay at 2." When I had the 3 kids, I described them as cats & dogs. The 3 of them fought so much, I wasn't sure they would all survive Kindergarten. I'm so happy to say those days are just memories.

Blondie is the happiest person I have ever met. She is sweet, gentle, and just happy. Her entire childhood, random people would stop me in the grocery store, at church, the school, everywhere, to comment on Blondie's smile. When she smiles, her eyes twinkle & you can't help but catch the happiness.

Yesterday, in addition to real gifts, she got the gift of clearer sight for her 13th Birthday. She was so excited to get her glasses & kept exclaiming, "Mom, I can see..." & pointing at things that were suddenly clearer than they had been. This from a child who was dreading getting glasses because she didn't want poor eyesight to get in the way of her future career as a pilot in the Air Force.

With all of her happiness, it's easy for others to forget that Blondie has had to deal with a lot in her 13 short years, starting at the day she was born...a horrible disorder that many doctors hadn't even heard of & took us 9 years to finally get under control. That alone was enough to deal with but she also has congenital hip dysplasia, OCD & ADHD; all of which have required various types of therapy & medical attention. Yet, she doesn't allow any of it to hold her back or get her down. Through it all: a challenging disorder, legs that just won't cooperate, a brain that won't focus at times & won't stop focusing at other times (& usually both at the same time), she never stops smiling. My one wish for her is that she keeps her happy spirit her entire life; that no one ever takes that from her.

It's not easy to live with OCD & ADHD but she's accepted it & even makes jokes about being forgetful, obsessed, and very active. Boy Teenager told her one day, "Just think, when you're an adult you will be the ideal employee. You can do a lot of things at once & get them all done perfectly!"

When Blondie was 3, she announced to everyone, "Animals are my friends. I can't eat my friends." From that day until a couple months ago, she was vegetarian. I was proud of my little girl for standing up for what she believed in. She joined me in counting her protein intake each day & researching different ways she could get proper nutrition without eating meat.

My little girl who stood behind my leg & wouldn't even say hi to her Kindergarten teacher or let go of me, only a month later stood up to every single kid in her class & told them to stop picking on the little boy who was "different". This girl has overcome her shyness to stand up for every injustice she sees & I can see her having a future in activism & changing the world for the better.

Happy Birthday, my Blondie.
Baby girl, you touch lives every single day & I'm so incredibly proud of you for all that you do. Don't ever stop being you.

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