Last Sunday was a scorcher in Poway. It was also a day just made for relaxing since the prior day was Dayla’s mega birthday bash at our place. Being lazy out back turned into water fun time due to a bag of 150 water balloons from the 99 cents store. This may seem obious to parents reading this but there aren’t many things more fun than seing a kid experience something for the first time. In this video you see Dayla’s first ever experience with overfilled water balloons, underfilled water balloons, untied water balloons, running through the sprinklers, and sitting in an ice chest “pool.”
Three years ago today, our world changed. Rocked. Filled up. Overflowed with love. Changed in all the best ways.
My Dayla bear, my monkey, my baby, my love….my Dayla,
Recently I had someone say to me that they thought motherhood has been hard for me. At first I was offended. I mean, did I look worn out? Did I say something? Was it you? Then I realized, it is true. Motherhood has been hard, and I might even admit, hard on me.
The day you came into my arms I realized for the first time that I was going to be in charge of teaching someone SO MANY THINGS. Life, love, God, forgiveness….so many things, important things….and I didn’t feel worthy of such an amazing task. A hard task. The day you started to repeat back what I say, I realized much I wanted to change myself. That I actually wasn’t as “Christlike” as I want to be, even as I thought I was. Each day now I want to be a better person, for you. The day that you started to have tantrums I realized how hard it is to actually be a GOOD parent, to say “no”. How hard it is to give discipline. How it breaks my heart each time because all I want to do is hold you. I realized that I have a lot more years of you telling me how much you hate me cause I didn’t give you what you wanted. But I also know that I am okay with being a mom you are mad at, a mom who says no, because I know it is the right thing to do.
I have no problem admitting motherhood is hard. I am not going to pretend for one minute that I am perfect or I have it all figured out. Please know that I am going to mess up, but that I am trying my best. Or that you are the perfect child. Or that you are not challenging. But Dayla, I am so excited to tell you that I know God! And I know with all my heart that he will pick up where I fail, he will fill in when I have nothing left, and that he picked you for our family, perfectly. I believe it with all my heart. I always tell you are you are “just right”. And I believe that with all my heart. You are just right for us. For our family. For our lives. For our growth. For everything. God knew. God knows how much I love a challenge! God knows how you complete your dad and I in a way that we never knew was possible.
Dayla, you bless us beyond words. I love you beyond what I could ever describe. I know for the first time what it means to “have you heart live outside your body” and “my cup run-eth over”. Every.day. I think those words. You are a miracle. A blessing. A gift. I wouldn’t change one thing about you. I love your spirit, your leadership, your independence, your fearlessness to dance to a different tune then everyone else. I love you. I love your laugh, your cry, the way you already have started to pick up your dad’s sense of humor, the way you organize and like to clean with your mama, and the fact that you are our “rollercoaster child” with really high highs and really big lows. You are SO much fun. I love you. I love the girl that you are and the woman that you are going to become. I can’t wait to see what God has in store for you Dayla.
Happy 3rd Birthday!
Most days I run on some sort of adrenaline or stress, or combination of both. I am a doer. I LOVE checking things off lists and making sure I have full days. I think in a way it is a rush for me. So that is how most of my days go, errands, volunteering, working. Feeling the rush of a deadline, of “busy”. That is until someone, usually my wonderful husband, reminds me to slow down, breathe in, and appreciate life.
Today though, was a different kind of day.
Today Dayla has a cold. One that would break your heart. Sniffles, cough and lots and lots of tears to go along with it. To top it off, today’s temperature outside is somewhere nearing the center of the sun. A sniffling cold on a record hot summer day. Just enough to break a mom’s heart.
So we left the errands and the lists to a different day. Today we spent the morning snuggling and going through our library of Disney movies. We giggled as Bambi struggled to say “bird”. She stroked my hair and whispered that she loved me. I held her close and promised her that I loved her more. Today we abandoned the big girl room and retreated to the “princess bed” in mom and dad’s room. Today I forgot about the list. Today I stayed a little longer. She fell into her dreams with her hand stroking my nose. I watched as the make shift curtains, a sheet tacked to the wall, transformed from just a green sheet to lovely retreat for my imagination, as it billowed in the simulated breeze. I watched as her eyes fluttered and her breath became regular, her stomach rising and falling in the perfect rhythm with the billows of the sheet. I remembered fondly the days that my mom would fall asleep with me. Some of my favorite memories. Then I took a moment to reflect on the miracle of giving birth to a little person. I thanked God for our little miracle.
Today instead of a rush of adrenaline my heart filled up with a rush of a different sort. Today instead of our usual stubbornness and independence and busy, we snuggled, we leaned on each other, we soaked life in. Today was a different kind of day.
Poway, our new city, has tons of great outdoor areas for roaming around. Based purely on a Google map listing Dayla and I went to check out Lake Poway. It’s just a little man made lake with grassy hills, picnic benches, and some kid’s toys. At sunset it’s really beautiful and peaceful though. Dayla and I had the place almost to ourselves and enjoyed exploring. Here are a few pictures of our adventures.