Tonight, actually several times this week, I've been remembering what was going on this week last year. A year ago tonight I was on bed rest at the hospital and not happy about it! I was really missing my family, I was really missing my bed (I had slept on a labor bed the night before -- worst bed ever!). I wanted to go home that night but couldn't because my blood pressure was too high. I even tried to make a deal with my doctor and told him if he let me sleep in my own bed that night I'd come back in the morning for the c section, he didn't go for it. Thankfully (after a mini pregnant lady meltdown) the nurse let me take a nice hot shower and moved me into my own room with a much more comfortable bed. It felt like heaven. I remember wondering if that was going to be my last good night's sleep for awhile when I went to bed that night. Little did I know that was definitely going to be the case! The next morning I woke up with a song in my head. Not one I'd heard or thought about - it was just in my head. Does that ever happen to you? It happens so often with me that I've come to think its the Lord telling me something. On September 22, 2011 I woke up with the song "Today is the Day" in my head. I just kept singing, "I'm not worried about tomorrow, I'm trusting in what You say. Today is the day" - How awesome the Lord was already putting that in my heart knowing what laid ahead of me that day. Not only was it one of the most precious days of my life - the day I met my third baby - but also one of the hardest because it brought about some fear, doubt, and anxiety wondering what was ahead of us. I love the Lord for knowing us so well He gives us peace before we ask for it.
Sometimes its hard for me to think back to Anniston's birthday. That first night was the longest night of my life. I remember my nurse taking my blood pressure and telling me until went down a bit I couldn't go see Annie. That killed me. I was physically trying to lower my blood pressure by taking slow, cleansing breaths and praying. They kept telling me she was so upset that she couldn't slow her breathing and I just kept thinking, "she needs me! She needs to hear my voice and smell me and know she's safe with her mommy." Do you know how heartbreaking it was to feel completely helpless? Stupid c sections. For a week or so after Annie came home I worried she wouldn't bond well with me because of the initial separation. I'm so thankful thats not at all the case. She's known from the beginning who her mommy is. We are quite attached! :) And I've loved every second of being her mommy since the moment I laid eyes on her. And as hard as it was and is to remember, I wouldn't change it. Because thats Anniston's story. And God's using it and will continue to use it for His glory. I believe that whole-heartedly.
As of 5:30 tomorrow night, you are ONE YEAR OLD! I know everyone says this but it really is hard for me to believe you're already a year old. I know that 365 days pass at the same rate each year but it seems like this past year FLEW. You've had quite an exciting year.
You are an exceptional snuggler.
You've always had a very special bond with Daddy. The first night he was the only one you got to hear and be near because mommy had to get her legs back and all this silly post-op stuff down before I could come see you. It was killing me to be so far from you (just down the hall) but it made me feel much better knowing you at least had your daddy with you.
Mommy & Daddy took LOTS of pictures of you during our visits to the NICU that first week. We wanted to have as many photos of all your funny/sweet/silly faces available because we missed you so much.
Your first Christmas, 3 months old
You fit right in with your silly brother & sister and love playing with them.
Your first bite of cereal. You look happy here but you were not and still aren't a fan!
6 months old and snuggling with your favorite guy.
Your first pedicure. You loved it! (You get that from me.)
One of the most common comments we hear from people about is you that you're such a happy baby. You really are. You've always been a very content baby. The only times you cry are when you're hungry, tired or need a clean diaper.
9 months old and starting to get mobile!
Your first 4th of July! You loved the fireworks!
11 months old, cheesing with the best of them!
My sweet Annie. You have been a life-changer from the start. Obviously the first week of your life brought about a new level of trust in the Lord, appreciation for medical technology and doctors, and definitely love. I've often told people that I feel like with you, being our third, I really know how much it means to just enjoy each phase. Some of them can be exhausting while you're living through them but I always knew it would be fleeting. And while I really missed my sleep, I knew it would come. And it did. Around 7 months. And when I was so tired of cleaning up spit up (um, about 3 weeks ago) it finally ended. PRAISE THE LORD! ;)
Your personality is really starting to show and you really are such a sweet heart. You have a strong will, but its a gentle strength. Do you know that is something your mommy has been praying for herself? You already possess a quality I wish I had. I love that! I promise you I'll continue to encourage that in you. You are one of the smiliest babies I've ever met, you love to giggle and usually Cash can get you going really well. You love to be around other kids, lots of people. You love music, you love your baby doll and soft blankie and you love to eat!
I'm so thankful for you, Annie Kate. You are one of the most precious blessings in my life. Every day I look forward to seeing your smile and watching you learn and grow. We love you, Annie girl!