Happy 2nd Birthday my sweet girl!
Today as you turn two and tomorrow we celebrate the year anniversary of your Baptism into our beautiful faith, it is safe to say I am spending a lot of time traveling down memory lane. As I walk that road, I have wondered what message I want to save for you on this day and during this season of life. Being able to capture what you mean to me, how I have treasured the time we have had, and the true definition of blessing you have been to my world feels quite impossible (and we both know that I have often already tried). So what is it I want to say on this day? Well I want to share with you one of the absolute biggest lessons you and God have joined forces to teach me.
It is part of our role as Catholics to spread the good news, invite others to experience Jesus and the blessings he can bring to those who choose to follow him. Whether it be through our words, our example, or just the story of our life, we seek to share our faith and invite others to take up their cross and follow Jesus too. If we do, there is no promise that life will be easy, but it will be filled with him and thus some pretty incredible blessings. You, my dear have been the catalyst God has used to teach me about having hope in God’s plans.
From the start of my journey to have a family I knew that infertility would be a part. I am not one to shy away from challenges, but that also comes with it a tendency to underestimate how big the mountain can be or how long the road may wind. At the start I am always eager and often armed with all the supplies that will give me all the courage and strength I should need. And yet as the trip continues, my humanity will kick in and just as my supplies and energy are running out, suddenly it seems what I thought was totally doable has a serious level of impossible. My hope for motherhood had several moments such as that, and I will tell you it often brought out the worst side of me. I am not proud of what became of me as I lost patience, energy, control of emotions, and sometimes even hope. But finally in 2019 all signs pointed to the right path to take… the best chance to find my way to my little one.
Well that journey had its own ups and downs, but at the very start I dedicated myself to true hope. Not just wish on a star type of hope, but the kind that you make the choices, take the steps, and live in anticipation of “when”…. not just “if”. Because believing in when is the time hope becomes its most powerful: it is united with faith. After starting that January with this hope, I would hear the words in July “Congratulations, you are pregnant”. That state of bliss lived strong for quite sometime…. dreaming of who you would be, what it would be like to know you, to imagine I was going to be gifted a whole little life to cherish and watch grow…. I was elated.
But by the time the new year of 2020 was making it presence known, the year I would meet you, there was a whole new set of unexpected circumstances. Yet, I had already learned to live in true hope, sustained by faith and it carried me right to the moment I met you, my Shannon girl. And forward for the years following that were full of all sorts of trials, yet they would be marked by the incredible milestones I was blessed to accompany you on. From little squeaks to “Mommy, I love you soooo much”, from flapping arms to “Mommy, I am running”…. thanks to you my life was not to be ruled by the holes of what was missing and rather full of little miracles of my sweet girl growing healthy and strong.
The gift God has given of you, the journey I was on to reach you, and to see the perfect timing and details of God’s plans in not just becoming a mom, but becoming your mom has been one of the best miracles of my life. Not only am I in awe by the gift of you as my daughter, but also in the incredible faith strengthening you have provided to my world. Right now when I am in moments of uncertainly, lack of clarity, or worry…. I am reminded of what steps in hope I have taken on my journey to you and what God had in store for my life in you…I just had to keep going. Shannon in just your little life you have already started to fulfill the ultimate goal: strengthen the body of Christ and trust in faith.
Thank you… thank you for allowing the first person you share the power of faith with to be your mom. Thank you to God our Father for making you so wonderfully, beautifully and uniquely made and then giving you to me. On your birthday I honor the blessing you are…. the special little person God has created you to be… and how overwhelmed I am that no matter what life has thrown at us, we remain a strong duo. The future is so very bright my sweet girl and we are going to adventure forward into it together, always.
In the new words of Miss Shannon Bessette: “I love you very much”! Happy birthday my girl!!