I’m just going to be honest. I’ve been one big mess of emotional memories today. Today was the day, 365 days ago, that I went into labor with Vera and I remember every detail. I remember what I ate, where I went, what I did. My first contractions started in the grocery store and I was with my mom and Noah. I asked Noah if he remembered that. He did. For my mom, watching me go into labor, I think that would be the strangest feeling as a mom, don’t you? I mean, watching your little girl, who you can replay her birth story in your head a million times over, is going to have a birth story herself. I just can’t imagine that feeling.
Learning Well LLC is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program. As an Amazon Associate, I earn from qualifying purchases. Affiliate links from Amazon or other programs are used on this website. For more info, please refer to our disclosure statement.
Every time I looked at the clock today, I remembered about what I was doing a year ago. It is kind of surreal. Tonight after she was asleep, I picked Vera up out of her crib and held her tight and swayed with her for a long time. She was born at such a pivotal point in our life, in our marriage, that her birth story will always be tied to it. I laid her back down with tear soaked hair and whispered my love to her. Something about birthdays always make me reminisce, but this time especially, and I needed to feel her one more time, just like she was one year ago, closer than close to me.
Get the 6 Secrets to a Simpler Mom Life
A semi-decent group kid photo.
And the other 65 looked like this. I kinda like this. This is real.
It occurred to me a few months ago, that I hadn’t made plans for her baby dedication, and since we’re way too rebellious for a traditional ceremony, I came up with our own, more intimate dedication. We spent Easter day at the Biltmore Estate because there’s nothing like pretending you’re part of a Downton Abbey-esqe Easter egg hunt on the lawn of an estate. It didn’t disappoint.
The middle two did the egg hunt while we looked on a laughed (and yes, cringed over the white dress diving for eggs in the very green grass). They turned in their eggs for prizes and we waltzed through the tulip garden from heaven and looked at every color in the rainbow, every 12 seconds telling Sophia not to pick the flowers. We walked and walked until we were shaded by the pond and feeling a little drowsy from sun and sugar, sat back and drank it all in for a moment. I had asked the kids to write letters to Vera beforehand and starting with Sophia, they read their love notes, one by one to her, smiling at her hoping for a response. She mostly just stared, but I’m sure she felt the love. They told her what they loved about her, like when she “smiled with her mouth open” and “how she made our family even.” They also gave her advice, like “to get a good education” and to “not marry somebody they’d have to beat up.” (I am not even kidding, you guys.) And then it was my turn. I had read mine ahead of time, but even somewhat rehearsed, I still bawled my eyes out through telling my girl how she had changed me, made me grow, loved me through my shortcomings, and given me light in so much dark. I choked through while Sophie’s eyes filled with tears too, ever sensitive of her mama, while the boys fidgeted, and Jarrod rubbed my back. He ended by praying and thanking God for entrusting us with Vera Mae and thanked Him for completing our family with such a precious girl. It was a precious moment and everything I had hoped her dedication would be.
We collapsed after such a long day in the sun, but we were all filled up….and that’s what we were looking for.