Monday, January 12, 2015

Dear Piper


You are almost 9 months old. It's so hard to believe that you have been here for that long, that you have been living and breathing outside of me for longer than you were inside. I admit, I have fleeting moments where I still expect it all to be taken away. In some ways, I think that makes me appreciate you more. You are my rainbow. My second chance. You are the light in my darkness, and I am forever grateful to be your mother.


The day you were born was the greatest day of my life. Even though I was terrified you wouldn't make it to your first breath, your cries pierced the delivery room like rays of sunlight to the dark forest floor. As soon as I heard your tiny voice, the floodgates that had been holding back my tears burst, and we were crying together. You, out of shock and newness...and me, out of relief and joy and a tiny bit of sadness. Relief that you made it out of me alive. Joy that my love was finally tangible. Sadness that you will never know the beautiful baby that came before you. When they brought you to me, and I saw your face for the first time, my heart leapt out of my chest and settled inside yours. You, darling girl, hold my heart and soul.


Now, as I carry you around the house, I stop every once in a while at your sister's pictures. I tell you who she is. One day, you will be old enough to understand. You will know you are a little sister and that your big sister is held in the stars, but of all things I want you to understand, I want it to be this: You are my second daughter, but you aren't second best. You aren't a consolation prize. You aren't a Do-over. You are my rainbow. You gave me back my hope when I thought it was lost forever. Although your sister made me a mother first, you are the one that I get to hold in my arms. The one I get to watch grow up. You are the child who will have scraped knees and tangled hair, who will go to kindergarten and middle school dances, who will laugh and cry and sing and jump. You are the daughter who gets to live.

Every night, when you are sleeping, I peek around at your face. As I watch your little body rise and fall with each breath, your mouth open in a soft O, your tiny hands curled into dimpled fists, I am in complete and utter awe. You are one of my greatest creations. And while I can't wait to help you grow into the wonderful young woman I know you will be, I also want to slow down time to savor each and every second of this beautiful life I have with you.

A mother's heart is deep and wide, with room for all of her children. While there is a broken piece where your sister should be, there is also a soft warm bed for you to nestle in. A place where only you fit. A place where you will always be welcome and wanted.

I love you beyond words, Piper Bean. Never forget that. I will love you when you first tell me "No." I will love you when you bring home your first bad grade. Even when you're sixteen and you think you hate my guts, I will still love you. I will love you until the last breath I breathe leaves my body, and even then, the love on that breath will be in the wind for all eternity.

Love,
Mom

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