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wife. mom. adjunct professor. we homeschool. i'm a little bit OCD. i love math. bright colors and geometric designs make me drool. we live with a medical rarity, and Jesus saved his life. through that, Jesus is changing us. The american dream and status quo is overrated...and sometimes just plain wrong. our lives, our family, our careers, our faith are all now filtered through a new lens-- thank you Jesus. welcome to our crazy. feel free to take some of it with you, we have plenty to go around.
It's not the load that breaks you down; it's the way you carry it.
-- Lena Horne

The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy; I have come that they may have life, and have it to the full.-- Jesus Christ

Sunday, April 22, 2012

so glad to see three! (years. not babies. don't be getting any ideas)

Tomorrow, when the sun comes up and we roll our sleepy selves out of bed, the littlest little in our home will be a big ol' 3 year old!  A birthday will be celebrated tomorrow!  Today, as we ate pizza (birthday boy's choice) and noshed on "cuhcapes" (cupcakes), my little boy BEAMED as we sang "happy birthday" a day early to him.  I'm sure his daddy and I beamed, as well.  So in keeping with is a letter to my littlest prince, for his special day.

Baby Ridge-
my how you have grown!  Three years ago was a fantastic day in our lives, as we became a family of 4 instead of 3!  You looked just like your brother at birth, and stole our hearts from your very first cry....well, probably from even months and months before that!  Your first year of life was scary, tragic, hopeless, hopeful, miraculous, tedious, trying, tearful, growing pain inducing, wonderful, celebratory, sad, fantastic, so outside of ourselves that there are really no words to truly describe it.  That year, and for at least 6 months following that year, our lives were somewhat horrific.  Our lives were also insanely blessed.  We saw the hand of God at work in your little life, and in our little lives, in a way we had never before seen.  It had been there, we had just been too much of something else to stop and ask for it.  To stop and see it.  Your trials, your illness, your fight for your life, has taught us so much more than we would have ever stopped to learn on our own.  Thanks be to God for you, and everything about you.

Your second year of life allowed for "normalcy" to begin to creep upon your little mischievous self.  You began to fully leave behind the disease that plagued you-- Jesus has taken that away from you.  You haven't needed a blood transfusion in 10 months (and counting!) and have not been in the hospital in over 15 months.  Your hemoglobin is stable.  Your platelets are NORMAL, which prompts me to laughter every time I hear the lab results.  You are a living, breathing, walking, talking, smiley miracle.  A miracle! A miracle (actually two of them, bc it is not blind to us that our oldest is a miracle himself-- by the grace of God he is here with us, and free of disease) sits at my table every day, and sleeps in my house, and eats my food, and writes on my walls, and throws fits in my floor.  A miracle. 

And now, tomorrow, you will be 3.  Three years ago, early in the morning, I was getting settled in a hospital bed, in early labor, there to be induced.  Labor progressed quickly, and within a few hours, there you were.  Easy peasy!  We went home a day or two later, life began, life changed, we changed, we are still changed, and God is doing some mighty works in our that would not ever have even been in our field of vision had it not been for that bump in our journey.  That rare, rare, almost zero chance of ever happening bump.  Praise God for that bump.

At 3, here are some of your current loves:
*hot doggies (corn dogs)
*freekas (fruit snacks)
*wearing shoes
*watching yo-gabba-gabba
*our (but mostly your) dog, Thunder
*using (kid-friendly) scissors
*making messes
*asking me to leave your plate out so you can eat more food later, as you feel "hungy" again
*jumping on the trampoline
*joking/hiding/sneaking/being silly
*saying "i huv you mommy."  "i huv you the most"  (huv=love)
*saying your brother's name as "gah-gahs"...this is something you probably could be finished with by now, but we encourage it, because it's just too cute that you say his name so incorrectly.
*stating some of the 12 disciples by memory.  Judas Iscariot is my personal favorite- how many 2/3 year olds can say that stuff?!?!  too funny.

You bring laughter (and other emotions, too) into our lives every single day. You are a MESS!  A BIG OL' MESS!  Potty training is about to change your world this summer, and I am so excited for NO MORE DIAPERS!  You have a tender heart- your feelings are hurt easily, you kiss other people when they are hurt, and you say you're sorry if you are mean to someone.  You are talking more clearly and can pretty much ask for anything, using complete sentences.  You are a joy in our life, and we count ourselves so super blessed to be the family God chose for you!  Without you, and what the Lord has already done through your small but large life, we would NOT be the people we are today.  Because of the journey God took us on through you, we are still growing and changing into people we couldn't even imagine three years ago. THANK YOU for taking "normal" from us.  THANK YOU for the opportunity to start again, to change, to allow God to begin a movement in us, and in our family. 

We love you, baby Ridge!  You are one of God's greatest gifts in our lives!  All praise to our Heavenly Father for the miracles he has performed in ALL of us, because of YOU, and because of His great great love for us!

HAPPY THIRD BIRTHDAY, my brown eyed, dark haired, devious, sweet, sweet, boy!!!  Momma (and Daddy, and Gah Gahs) looooves you!!!