a blog about raising a daughter with cerebral palsy and learning unexpected lessons along the way

Wednesday, September 3, 2014

Seven Years

I could tell you my internet has been wonky. I could tell you that the move into temporary housing until our dream home is complete has completely rocked my boat. I could also share the secret that every time I try to gather my thoughts to write about Oia I get lost in a puddle of tears and give up. Every damn time. Times are beautiful right now, but quite hard too in the land of motherhood. All of this is true but still, my girl deserves a birthday post. Even if it means the whole coffee shop sees me crying behind this laptop. I'll carry on through tears, because Oia does... So, here's to you, my first daughter.

Dearest Oia Lee,

It's hard not to reminisce and relive the details, play by play, of the day you were born. Seven years have gone by since I stepped into motherhood and I can still tell you every detail of the beautiful day you were born. Starting at 4am that morning. The contractions that woke me. The emotions that filled me. The phone call to my midwife that calmed me. The details of August 22, 2007 will never fade. Ever. They are as strong and as vivid as the little girl they belong to. That's you, my dear.

For seven years now, I have been reliving your birth day. At your birth, I was blindsided by your power to simultaneously change my name while dividing my life into before and after. It all happened at first sight of you, which was more like a reunion than an introduction. I hardly remember my previous life or to describe it more accurately, I'm not the same person I was when living the previous life. Not even close. I'm better now. You get (and deserve) the stronger, the more complete, me. Since your birth day, you have been working hard to shape my world and stretch my perspectives beyond any point I knew possible. You have tried me and tired me. You have loved me and trusted me. And you have forgiven me when I have failed plenty. You have taken away every ounce of my patience while teaching me how to find more of it. No individual thus far has ever taught me or reached me the way you have. Just how do you do it? And mark my words Oia, no one ever will. I'm seven years stronger. You, too, are seven years stronger. And as I often say, you are seven years of a beautiful handful... seven years of unconditional love... and seven years of rainbow, because we certainly have had our fair share of rain but thank God the sun continues to shine. And it does so every day, beginning with your smile.

Oia, thank you for waking each day with a smile on your face, even when I don't. Thank you for erasing the previous day and allowing me to start all over with each sunrise. Thank you for delivering meaning to this life and thank you for graciously showing me what life really is meant to be. Thank you for breaking down the barriers between complete strangers with your always welcoming personality. I know your across-the-room shout-outs and hello's in public places have set free their recipient from a bad day. Your magic flips a frown upside down and warms the coldest of hearts. A stranger once told me you are an angel with a ponytail. It's true. And the best part of all of this is that you don't even know how magical you are. Selfless and loving is you, coated with an unbreakable innocence. Thank you for allowing us the front row to witness you power through this crazy and hard life. You do it well. And should you ever encounter doubt about how well you're doing, just know that your best is enough for your Daddy and I. We promise. Carry on at your own pace but don't forget to look behind you when you need us, because we will be right there. The view from over your shoulder is our spot and we wouldn't trade it for anything or anyone else in the whole world. My favorite of loves is the love I have for you, little big one. Here's to a blessed seven years and to a blessed every day thereafter. I love you. So, so much.


  1. Wow, that certainly made me cry tears of joy. Beautiful post for a beautiful girl. XO

  2. We are all much better, stronger, more loving people because of little miss Greece. As those daily stories pull and build don't lose sight of one of the very first...daddy had to decide how to prioitize the tree that fell through the roof and this little event.

  3. Beautiful post. I know the hard road you walk, as a parent of two very difficult children with special needs. I understand how hard it can be to say anything at all positive some days and yet you knocked it out of the park with your post. Your unconditional love for your daughter is amazing. Thank you for the reminder to focus on the positive.

  4. Holy moly. Tears from me. Happy Birthday "little big one."