Saturday, June 21, 2008

Happy Birthday!!!

Wow…1 year! I can hardly believe it. To say that this year has been a roller coaster would be an understatement. Ella was born at 1:03 pm, and around 3:00pm we were informed that she had this skin disease. I think we had to have the doctor repeat the name a dozen times before we wrote it down to remember. Unfortunately we were also informed that her chance of survival was slim. Hard news to hear after you’ve just delivered your first baby. At around 4:00pm she was brought into my room in a travel incubator…this was my chance to see her for the first time. I got to look at her long enough for Joe to sign the release papers sending her to Children’s National Hospital in Washington, DC. Then she was off.

I had 3 prayers. 1) That I would get to see her (I couldn’t remember what she looked like from our one encounter because I was on drugs from my cesarean). 2) That I would get to hold her. And 3) that she wouldn’t live a life of pain. As much as I wanted her here with us, I didn’t want her to suffer, so if that meant Christ taking her home with Him then I was ok with that. Now, a year later, I see that God has answered all of those prayers. I get to look at that beautiful face every day and kiss those chunky cheeks. I get to hold and squeeze our precious baby as much as I want to. And Ella doesn’t act like she is in pain. There are times a boo boo will hurt a bit more than usual, and those pesky mouth blisters cause pain. But she doesn’t live in constant pain all the time. Or at least if she does, she doesn’t act like it (I guess we’ll never really know).

God is merciful. We have learned that! And he really doesn’t give us anything we can’t handle, even though we think we can’t handle it. Don’t get me wrong, I have had some serious conversations with God over the past year. I have been confused, sad and angry. But in the end it all comes back to one thing. It’s not my job to understand…my job is to be the best mom that I can be and to love Ella and raise her to know God’s love and how He has chosen to use her as an example of His power.

We celebrated Ella’s birthday surrounded by family and friends. At her party there were a lot of laughs, and a few tears, but mostly it was like any other 1 year birthday party. We had screaming kids, parents chasing after their kids, crying babies, parents trying to soothe their babies, and one very overwhelmed little girl. We didn’t know how Ella was going to handle her birthday. There were a lot of people and she is in the phase where she knows who she knows…and she knows who she doesn’t know. She did great! Yes she was shy, and yes she had a couple of melt-downs. But for the most part she put on a great show. She even danced when everyone sang Happy Birthday to her. It was a great time! It was a celebration of Ella’s life!

Ella’s Life Verse:
John 10:10
Jesus said, “…I have come that you may have life, and have it to the full.”


Paige said...

Happy Birthday Ella! We we so sorry that we missed the party!

Anonymous said...

There's a line from the movie,
"Steel Magnolias" that states...
"laughter through tears is my favorite emotion." Well, that was true for these grandparents at Ella's birthday party. There was such celebration, joy, gratitude, and hope evident with everyone present. Ella and her remarkable parents have touched lives near and far. We are grateful to our Lord for His tender mercies and to our family and friends for their unfailing support during the past year.

GiGi and PawPaw

Anonymous said...

Happy Birthday Ella! Cayton and I are so glad that we know such a sweet girl and family. We don't even mind sharing Aunt Beck Beck Sillygirl! Enjoy every moment because they fly by!
Laura and Cayton