So Saturday was the big day; my baby turned TWO! But backing up a little ways to Friday……
Two years ago on Friday, I was laboring away in the hospital debating whether or not to get an epidural (spoiler alert, I did). At that point I totally expected to give birth at some point during the late afternoon or evening and if someone had told me that I still had over 10 hours left of labor, and that I wouldn’t give birth until the next DAY, I would have punched them in the face. But, 19 hours of labor or not, that sweet girl pictured up there was worth every second of pain because she has brought me nothing but joy over the course of the last 2 years. She is my best little girl friend, my mini me (more in personality than looks) and my heart.
Although her BIG DAY was on Saturday, her teacher offered to do a little school celebration on Friday, which I obviously was all for. We are lucky to have Leah in the sweetest church half day program and her teacher really is the greatest. I know so many school these days have such strict restrictions on what you can and cannot bring in for treats (no glucose, no homemade, no sugar…I’ve heard the list go on and on) but we are lucky to have Leah in a very chill program that, not only allows me to bring in yummy homemade birthday treats, but also allows (and encourages!) me to come in for the birthday snack time celebration where I turned into a full on emotionally charged crazy lady, crying and snapping a million and one pictures of my daughter sitting at the snack table eating a cookie. And yet her compassionate teacher just smiled and said how glad she was that I could stop in.
I didn’t tell Leah that I was going to come in (not that she would remember…I mean, she’s 2..) but I did want to see how she would react to the surprise. And I seriously couldn’t have asked for a better reaction than the one I got. Walking into the room I could see all the kids sitting on the rug while their teacher set the table for snack. Leah looked up and saw me and the look of happy surprise that burst onto her face was too sweet for words. She got up and ran over to me, throwing her arms around my neck before turning to the class and loudly exclaiming, “My mommy!” And that was when I started to cry. After a short time convincing her that she really should wear her birthday crown because it was “so cute!” I watched as she settled down in her special celebration chair at the snack table. It killed me how she would keep catching my eye and giving me the sweetest little shy, but proud, smile every few minutes before turning back to her friends at the table. And then, when we began singing “Happy Birthday,” you could totally see the moment where she realized that this was all for HER and she quickly looked down at the table with a bashful smile, and I started to cry again. Pregnant emotions or not, this girl just makes my heart burst with her sweet and gentle soul. As all of the other kids were bouncing around in their seats, (as normal 2 and 3 year olds do) Leah just calmly sat there, taking it all in, while quietly sharing with me her friend’s names whenever I asked who someone was.
Also, let’s take a minute to talk about this baby:
When I walked into the room, all of the kids were sitting in a circle on the rug, waiting to be called up for snack time, all empty handed…besides my daughter. Leah LOVES babies. At home she ALWAYS has a baby doll in her arms and apparently at school it’s the same way. Now this baby that she lovingly clutched the ENTIRE birthday party, looked a little…..
gross loved. You could tell that she had been in the classroom for QUITE some time now and it took all of my mommy power to hold my tongue when Leah started giving her kisses even though the germ-a-phobe in me was dying to say “let’s see if we can find a cleaner baby to love on…” 😉 But I held it in and instead focused on how compassionate and loving and gentle this girl was with her baby doll and how much I hope this gentleness, caring and love transfers over to her baby sister!
I wondered if Leah would have a tough time seeing me leave to head back to work, but after snack time, with the promise of a trip to the playground on the horizon, she happily gave me a kiss good-bye and ran off to join her friends. And with that, my first school birthday party came to a close!