Time for my annual birthday letter! (The birthday posts are likely to continue for a few days . . . ).
Dear Sweet Sammie B -
You, my girl, are three!
Over the weekend, we spent three days celebrating YOU. With a graduation party on Friday, gifts, a birthday movie (Lion King in the theater) and dinner on Saturday and a swimming birthday party on Sunday . . . we spent the entire weekend focused on YOU and your fabulousness. Some might say that we went overboard, but I say . . . you deserved it. It is so very true - I can't think of any little person more deserving of such an extended celebration, or any one (or thing) I'd rather celebrate.
With your third birthday comes a lot of change for you, and for us. You are no longer going to be in the birth to three EI program for your therapy services, and you graduated from your little school program you've attended for the last year (where you've absolutely flourished!). Your dada and I have worked hard over the last months to make this transition more smooth - we managed to switch many of your therapists to ones covered by insurance so that you'd have some continuity, but still, we know, it is a lot of change for a little girl. But, I have no doubt, that you will handle the transition as you do every thing else in life - with grace and perseverance not found in many children your age. In your three years, you have taught us so, so much. You have made us better people, and each day, you motivate me to strive to be an even better parent than I was the day before. You deserve no less, my girl. You have shown us more love than I ever knew possible. Literally heart-so-full-it-feels-like-it-might-burst kind of love.
As one chapter closes (and mama feels anxious about change, as I always do!), I keep reminding myself to just trust that new chapters will open. New, fabulous chapters. Your new teacher will, no doubt, fall just as in love with you as your old teacher did, and well, things will just fall into place as they are meant to be. My prayer for this new chapter - for you - is that the right people walk into your life. The people that are meant to be in your life - to enable and empower you right along side your dada and me.
"Two" proved to be an amazing year for you my girl. Your vocabulary and personality both just exploded. You make us laugh every day. Many who meet you (including your developmental pediatrician, and she's an expert!) comment on your charming sense of humor and your wise-beyond-your-years sense of self. So true. You tease us, you tell "jokes," you light up our every day in a way that words just cannot express.
Your dada is trying to teach you to tell "knock knock" jokes. So far, you've got:
Sammie B: Knock knock Who's there?
Dada: Who's there?
Sammie B: Mama
Dada: Mama who?
Sammie B: YO MAMA!!! (with squeals of delight).
See? You are funny!
We also know that you are starting to recognize your challenges. That some things are just hard for you. We wish we could make everything in life easier for you. I never want you to doubt yourself. And, my sweet girl, I want you to know that your dada and I are committed to making sure that your challenges will never define you. No label will ever define you. Your magic, love, giggle, sense of humor and amazing little personality will define you. And, I promise you this: your dada and I will always be beside you, and together, we will take on whatever life throws our way or your way. We are, after all, "Team Sammie B."
I know that "three" is going to be a big year for you too . . . you are starting a new school, our family of three will soon be a family of four -- you are going to become a big sister! And, I have no doubt, you will be an amazing one.
My sweet girl, I have to tell you, you may be "three" but you are still MY baby. I still love nothing more than snuggling up with you for a long weekend nap and having you asleep on my shoulder. I still tip toe in your room at night just to see you sleeping, snuggling with whatever baby doll and stuffed animals you've chosen that night (usually at least three, tonight you chose to have three different Minnie Mouses!). I stand there, and I watch you sleeping, and I whisper, "you are perfection." You are my girl. You are perfection.
I cannot believe it has been three years since we welcomed you to our world.
Three amazing, wonderful, magical years full of love and joy and happiness.
I look forward to the coming days . . . as these new chapters open in your life. As I've said before, my girl, this is your story. You get to write it. Dada and I are just lucky to be along for the ride. I am so, so lucky to be your mama.
Happy 3rd Birthday, my girl!
I love you with every ounce of my being.