The day has arrived. My baby had her first day of school. I never fully understood why parents would cry on the first day of school until now! Even though my baby is still my baby and reality is, she is only two, she is all grown up. God designed parenthood perfectly. You have 9 months (or if you're like me 7) to prepare to be responsible for a tiny human. Or if you're adopting you have the waiting period to prepare. Then you have a newborn, which is a huge responsibility, but truth is the newborn barely moves and does not have too many needs. Then the baby starts crawling, so you learn to not leave stuff around the house, then the walking begins and you learn to put things on higher shelves. Then the baby begins saying words like "mama," "dadda," "milk," "nap," etc. But then you blink and your baby is speaking in full sentences, she is having full conversations, she has compassion towards others and an understanding of her day to day life. So then by the time they begin school, she really is a mini adult entering into a world where she can't be protected 24/7, where she has to decide on her own how she is going to act, where she has to decipher between good and evil. This is her first experience of the real world without us around. And she is ready. And that readiness is what made me tear up, it's what made me have the feels. My baby is not only growing up, but she is ready to face whatever may come her way.
I am so grateful for the village that has raised her from the beginning. We have so many friends who adore her and love her. We have the most incredible sets of parents who spoil her, who take her in as their own, who love her more than they probably loved us. And she has the best daddy. For those of you who don't know, I've had a crush on Christian since I was 15 years old. One of the qualities that attracted me to him was that I knew he would be an amazing dad, and he proves that to me every. single. day. I am so blessed that I get to do life with him and that Savannah gets to grow up knowing she is loved and protected by so many. Thank you to all of you who love Savannah.
In honor of her first day of school, here is an open letter to my baby girl:
Today is your first day of Pre-School. Mommy and Daddy are so excited for you and this new adventure you are beginning. We spent this last week getting everything ready. We bought new clothes, a new water bottle, signed papers, got your Emergency kit ready. You were so excited. Last night you didn't sleep because of how excited you were. You laid in bed for four hours before closing your eyes, and woke up the moment you knew we were awake. You put on the clothes you picked out the night before and said more times than I can count that you were ready for Pre-School. I don't even think you understood how true that statement is. You were ready to leave our house for the day, but you were also ready for your new adventure, ready to make new friends, ready to learn, ready to see what life has in store for you.
You told us this morning that when you grow up, you want to be a doctor. I am sure that this will change many times as you grow up (I'm still deciding what I want to be when I grow up), but to hear you say those words melted my heart. With what you have been through, I expected you to be scared of doctors, to want to have nothing to do with them, but instead you want to be one. You have a greater understanding that doctors are there to help you, not to harm you, and that is why I know you are ready.
When you fell down today, you ran to me crying and told me you were sad. I love that you let yourself cry when you are sad, but I also love that you picked yourself up, and that is why I know you are ready. That's how life is, there will be times where we feel knocked down and I want you to always remember that it is equally important to let yourself feel and to pick yourself up. I hope you know that I will always be there for you when you fall down.
Once it was time to enter the classroom, you reached over to another girl's hand and guided her into the class. It was your first day, but you were already helping someone else who seemed scared. That's how I know that you are ready. You have such a kind, compassionate, and loving heart, and you will need that in this world where not everyone is as fortunate to have the same heart.
Savannah, Mommy and Daddy are so proud of you, who you are becoming, and who you already are. You constantly teach us about ourselves, you've seen our weakest moments and have challenged us and loved us through them. You've been teaching me to live in the present moment, to enjoy where we are instead of always focusing on where we are going. You teach us something new everyday and you show us what God's unconditional love for us must look like. Daddy and I love you more than you know. We want you to always remember that we are here for you, through the good times and bad, and that we are with you in life's journey. Thank YOU for being you, for loving us, and for letting us be your best friends.
I love you baby girl. Forever.