Tuesday, 25 September 2012

Letter to my daughter on her first birthday

I tried to talk to you today, but you were more interested in crawling after the cats, and pulling things off shelves, in doing anything that didn't involve staying still and listening to your soppy mummy. I'm not surprised though, after all you are a baby. And an amazing one at that. Yes all babies are amazing, but you are mine and I regularly stare at you in wonder.

A year ago today I held a tiny, wrinkly baby in my arms. You made tiny cries, curled up on my chest with your eyes screwed shut. I struggled to believe that you were finally here, but I knew my life would never be the same again.

Over the past year you and I have spent most of our time together. You have made me cry, and made me angry, but I haven't once stopped loving you. Not even in my most sleep deprived moments when I have wanted to run away. I couldn't though because you and I are still one. You came from me and I continue to provide your nourishment and comfort. One day soon you will need me less, but I hope that I am always there when you want me.

We have had an amazing year full of smiles and laughter, even though you spent months unable to do either. I have watched you grow from a barely moving, quiet ball to my 
Iittle girl who is learning to stand, walk & talk. You have a strong personality with humour, love and stubbornness. I can see myself in you and it makes me proud.

Many people don't understand how I feel. They only hear my frustrations about tiredness and that my life is no longer my own. I am less quick to share the huge amount of joy and happiness you bring to everyday because it's not so easy to share. People think they understand the tiredness, but few can appreciate what the highs are like and just how much I love you. My world revolves around you and I wouldn't wish it any other way.

Today you turn one.

Tomorrow I hand over part of your care to nursery. You will spend more of your waking hours there than with me. I wish I could continue to care for you full time, but even if we could afford it I don't think I'm strong enough. You need different experiences and new opportunities and I don't have the energy to give you what you need. So I know I am doing the best for you, and the best for me, but I will continue to feel guilt and tears when I think about all the magical moments I will miss.

Thank you for the last year, it has been amazing. 

And Happy Birthday.

The beautiful faces of my daughter over the last year

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