I have told Elli countless times over the last twelve months that I wish I could turn back time and relive her first year of life again. With Elli, sure, I was excited about having a sweet little girl, but I was so nervous, so shocked by the lack of sleep, and so unaware that I should treasure every second with this sweetest of gifts – one child to love and hold with no one to interrupt me, no other child to clean up after, and no one to discipline. Why didn’t I just sit and hold her all day???
Nine years, and four more babies later, I was prepared. I knew that most likely, Millie was the last child I would ever give birth to. From the day she came home, I stole every moment I could with her alone. I still treasure the first weekend after she was born. Nathan was away for 3 nights, and Papa Sam and Grandma Sue had the four older kids. I made myself a pot of soup and spent the whole weekend (minus a few outings with Joni) in the red chair in my living room, staring at Millie. We watched lots of movies, took some naps, and read some books. It was heaven to me. Throughout the fall months, I would put the kids to bed as early as possible and retreat to my red chair with my little baby swaddled up in her blanket. It got to the point where Millie wouldn’t eat anywhere else. In the middle of the night when she was hungry, I would work really hard to try and feed her in my bed, but we would always end up downstairs in our chair, where she would eat like a champ.
This sweet routine came to an end when my little girl started to move (Jude, our neighbor, has nicknamed her “Millie on the Move” for a very good reason!). She was a quick one, crawling at five months and walking by 8. She’s never really let us cuddle with her (Except for one great day when she had a fever :)) because she always has somewhere to go! As my wise neighbor said, “You didn’t get a baby in Millie for very long!”
She might not have been a baby for very long, but she has still brought us so much Joy (fitting middle name!) She has always been so quick to smile and laugh, and seems to have a little sparkle in her eye. I think she may give us a workout! She has the sweetest kisses that she rations out in painfully low numbers and loves to tease us into thinking we might get one. When I read her books she always giggles, and the one time she will sit still is when we swing together on the porch swing.
Millie loves her siblings, and the feeling is mutual! I keep a monitor in my kitchen and EVERY TIME she wakes up, the kids are fighting to get up the stairs to get her out of bed. She cries when any of them get out of the car to be dropped off anywhere, and she lets them all hold her. Today, as I headed to take the older two kids to gymnastics, I noticed that Nevi was carrying her purse. When I asked her what she had in there, she replied, “Oh, I brought some toys for Millie to play with while we run errands!” She is well taken care of…
Sure, she doesn’t get pureed avocados like my first born did, or a bath every night, but she has 6 pairs of arms to hold her, and a family that adores her more than she will ever know.
We love you sweet baby girl. Happy Birthday!!!
Note to self: Take pics of Millie with the other love of her life, Daddy!