Thursday, July 8, 2010

Scout's Birthday

My oldest daughter turned 7 on the 4th of July.  Yes...she is a little firecracker from the very beginning!

We had our annual birthday BBQ and celebrated her special day with our entire family...which has now grown to almost 20 people!

She was overwhelmed with gifts again this year.  My she is spoiled!  A just a tiny bit rotten...but in the best way possible!  She asked for "Big Girl Diva Rock Star" presents.  Your guess is as good as mine...but we all tried!  The scarf and necklace from my nephew Kyle, his girlfriend Liz and his son Brian was a big hit.  She also asked to redecorate her room to make it into a "big girl" room in a, yes you guessed it, "diva rock star" theme.  She got everything she needs to make it a very special room including some really cool art for her walls.  To top it off her CeCe and Papa (Chad's parents) gave her a big girl bike!  Now if we can just convince her to ride it without training wheels.

I started making this flag cake for Scout's 1st birthday and it has now become an annual tradition with people fighting over blueberry, raspberry or "both" pieces!

Scout is growing up so fast!  I can't believe that she is already 7.  It seems like only a few years ago that I was pregnant with her!

She is beautiful isn't she?  Inside and out.

I found out that I was pregnant with Scout when Chad and I were living in Chicago.  We were living in an apartment on the 4th floor of a walk-up.  I really couldn't imagine trying to have a baby in the city (or walking up those stairs 9 months pregnant, let alone with all the baby stuff) so we decided to head back to Lawrence.  Knowing this part of the story you can probably guess that she wasn't exactly "planned".  Wanted, yes.  Planned, not so much.

Most people know my pregnancy story by now so I won't bore you with the details.  For those who don't I will sum it up by saying that I became very, very sick and eventually went into heart failure.  It is called Peripartum Cardiomyopathy--or heart failure caused by pregnancy.  It was a horribly scary time and I was actually given only 6 months to get better...or not.  The not being permanent damage to my heart, a heart transplant or even death.  Whoo-hoo, right?  Great way to start off life as a new mommy.

Every cloud has a silver lining right?  Because I was so sick I was forced to slow down (OK, basically stop) and just enjoy my daughter.  For the first 6 months of her life I spent every waking moment soaking her in and learning all that I could about her.  We slept a lot.  She was very rarely out of my arms.  Even when other people wanted to hold her!  Our close relationship started with those first few months of trying to make an imprint on her memory in case something horrible would happen.  My illness also made it so I had to stay home.  There was no way that I could return to work so I was given the gift of being a stay-at-home mom.  I loved it.  We were a team and we took on the world and my illness together.  She would come with me every day to Cardiac Rehab and would coo at the "grandmas and grandpas" there while I worked out to try and improve my heart function.  I changed her clothes like 3 times a day.  And did I mention how much we slept?

When I made it past the 6 month mark I was able to finally relax a bit and just enjoy being with my daughter.  She was amazing to watch.  She started crawling at 5 months and walking at 9 1/2 months.  She was a chatterbox with a huge vocabulary by the time she was a year old.  She loved people and people loved her.  Scout has continued to be an achiever.  She is constantly blowing me away with her intelligence.  She loves to learn.  She is also a very sensitive little girl.  She has a heart the size of the United States.  She is creative and incredibly funny.  The child can drop a punch line like a seasoned pro!  She is beautiful with these amazing blue eyes that speak for themselves.  She is stubborn and bossy.  She loves to be the center of attention but at the same time she can be very shy.

Our bond that began with those first few months has only grown.  We can look at each other and instantly know what the other person is thinking.  We have the same taste in almost everything and not in a "I want to be like my mom" way because she thinks that I want to be like her!  She is one of my favorite people to just sit and talk to.  I am a very lucky mom to have such an amazing daughter.  She came into this world with a bang and I have no doubt that she will leave behind her mark on the world.  I am just so honored to have the chance to watch her do it.

Happy Birthday Scout!  I love you so much.

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