How can I even begin to describe how much I love her? I spent much of yesterday morning thanking God for her. I read over Psalm 103. It describes all that God has done for us. He's forgiven us of ALL our sins, He's healed all of our diseases, He redeems us from the pit, He crowns us with lovingkindess and mercy. All of that is WAY BEYOND what we deserve. In fact, it's completely opposite of what we deserve. And then He chooses to give us more blessings beyond all of that. Blessings like my sweet little funny Shirley.
She's now walking all over the place, like a little waddling penguin. I have a bag of clothes of hers that I'm getting ready to donate (In fact, anyone have a little girl under a year that's in need of clothes? Let me know!) and she'll take one piece out at a time and walk around dragging it behind.
She has started to make a surprised face all the time. She forms her mouth into a large O and her eyes become wide as the moon.
She blows kisses, and she finally started to give me little kisses! She kinda just leans her mouth towards my face.
She loves her little stuffed doggie and calls it "Dah-dee". When I wake her up from nap time she has to grab him and bring him along.
She loves everyone she meets and will reach out for complete strangers to hold her. Emily let a random lady in Starbucks hold her the other day.
I thought that being a new mom to a little baby would be so hard. I thought I would be lonely at home. I thought her cries would bug me. I thought that I would get bored playing with simple toys and reading simple books to her. I thought I would still love being a mom but I didn't realize how much! I don't mind if she's my only company during the day. Her cries make my heart break, even when she's crying out of sinful anger. I could spend hours (maybe) playing with her and snuggling with her as we fight over who turns the pages of her books!
When I woke her up yesterday morning the sudden brightness of the light caused her to look at me all squinty-eyed and she smiled a sweet little smile. I picked her up and she snuggled her head on my shoulder for almost two minutes! (A rare thing for this always-on-the-go girl.) It was like a little gift to me on her birthday. I realized her birthday is more like mine because I'm the one who got the greatest little gift the day she was born. I'm almost in tears just thinking of it and God's goodness.
Some wondered why Kwacha and I wanted to have a baby right away, but I don't care what anyone thinks about it. We wouldn't have wanted it any other way. Shirley has brought us even closer, figuring out how to care for a little newborn, noticing little bits of each of us in her face. We get to thank God for her together and depend on Him even more for wisdom in how to raise her. Most of all we pray that one day she might know Him, love Him and serve Him and experience that greatest joy of all, being with Him for eternity.
Thanks for reading about Shirley this past year and sharing in our joy. We are thankful for all of you too!