My most cherished ones,
Love is ridiculous. It can turn a sane person into a lunatic in a matter of seconds. Love creates a passion inside your soul that is uncontrollable and irrational. It comes when you are not expecting it, grabs you around the throat making you gasp for air and wail as if your life were in jeopardy. It is the years of loving someone only to have them ripped away from you making you question what it really means.
But, love is also beautiful. It can turn a distrusting heart that has been damaged by the hurts of others into a heart that wants to change the world. Love is that moment when you first fall for someone and hold them in your arms vowing to never let them go. And it is that moment when you kiss the cheek of someone you hold dear, to say good-bye, knowing it is the last time you will ever see them on this earth. The very moments when you feel your baby move inside or hold them for the first time that is love.
I loved you before you were. See, ridiculous and beautiful. How can anyone love someone before meeting them or seeing them, knowing them? It is hard to fathom and yet it is a beauty that mothers for thousands of years have understood.
Have you ever watched a little girl hold a doll? Instinctively, they know how to hold that baby. They know how to rock it and pat its back in just the right spot. In much the same way that little boys know how to make car and gun noises. Growing up as a little girl, I was no different. I played house with my baby dolls in tow. I never doubted that when I grew up I would be a mom.
Daddy and I fell in love, got married and we knew that we wanted to add to our family. That’s the way it is supposed to happen. Sometimes, however, life doesn’t fall into place the way you plan. Four long years we struggled with the disappointment of wanting a child and having it not happening. We found out that it wouldn’t be in our stars without help.
It is truly amazing the gifts that God puts in front of you when you give it over to Him. I believe that all our struggles, yearnings and prayers were held close to the Lord’s heart, held in His hands, waiting for the timing to be just perfect for our family.
We were told by someone that getting help from fertility doctors was wrong. That it was a sin; ‘playing God’ so to speak. We believe that God gives doctors the gift of helping couples just like us. That would be like saying that it is playing God when someone who has cancer goes to an oncologist or a paraplegic seeks mobility. Our doctors were so full of compassion and love; it surpassed any judgment or misunderstanding that came our way.
We would have been happy with just one baby to love, but God gave us two. How beautiful that was! I can never forget the moment I saw you both inside of me on that ultrasound and the ultrasound tech say, ‘There they are!” It was beautifully overwhelming. Don’t get me wrong, our lives became crazy – 24 diapers a day, feedings every two hours, no sleep, the washing machine going constantly – the list goes on and on. It is a period of time that I look back on with utter amazement that we did all of that without losing our minds – and you survived.
We choose to pass on this beautiful love that was given to us. When you were only nine months old, knowing we had three more embryos to use, we had a decision to make. Were we content with our family the way it was or would we add on? Daddy and I knew that getting a boy and a girl the way we had was God’s plan. We were happy and blessed beyond anything we ever expected. We chose to give those three embryos to a mommy and daddy out there that had love building up inside of them they way we had. We knew without a doubt that anyone who would be going this route to have kids had been in our shoes and would love those little ones more than could ever be expressed in words. We have never regretted or questioned that choice. It is a love that is beautiful and complicated.
Every day that you have been my children has been a gift. When I look upon your sweet faces I know that all the waiting was because it had to be you. The two of you together, my Caleb and my Emma. Not one or the other. Not one and then the other. No, you wouldn’t be the same two children God intended for me. It needed to be Caleb and Emma together.
My strong, independent Emma – the girl with a pair of sassy pants that is too big for your own good. You are brilliantly smart and studious. A heart that loves giving to others and is saddened by injustices of this world. You are graceful on your feet, dancing with a passion that is deep inside your soul. Wearing your feelings on your sleeve and loving with all that you are. Your laugh is deep, growly, and infectious. When you smile your eyes sparkle like the glitter on your favorite purple boots.
My sweet, comedian Caleb – the boy that was given to me to share in my silliness. You move at a speed that can only be described as calm and content. Nothing makes you hurry. It reminds me often to slow down to your pace and see things as you do. You are a lover, never a fighter. Your faith is astounding and refreshing. Kindness is something so natural for you. You worry about others needs and feelings, with such a pureness. My quiet thinker with the quick wit – you leave me speechless time after time with how smart you are.
Together you make the perfect pair for our home. They way you love each other is beautiful in itself. I couldn’t keep you a part if I tried. Not only are you sister and brother, but best friends. What a joy it is to watch you grow into the people that God intended you to be. How often I have watched you sleep and play, laughing and learning, all the while in complete awe that I was given the privilege of being your mother. You are the greatest part of me. Nothing I have given or will give the world or that God has given me is as beautiful as you. Nothing in my life has taught me patience, humility or time management (really the list of life lessons is endless) the way being your mom has. It is ridiculous the amount of growing I have done. All for the better.
I hope that you understand that I have always wanted you, loved you and needed you. You both are the greatest joy in my life. I am proud of you and the people you are. All I ask is that you always look for the beautiful and ridiculous love that surrounds us in this life. Someday, when I am no longer walking beside you on this earth, I hope that you know the legacy I stood for and keep me alive in you by sharing it with others.
Love you always,
Your Very Honored Mom