Yesterday was Lucy's Birthday
She turned 4
We blew up 50 balloons and filled her room with them as she slept
We tied 6 helium balloons to her bed
When she awoke and realized what was on the floor and why, well, her grin was worth all the hot air I expelled and the cut on my finger from tying all the balloons
She got to have a cupcake, ok 2 but they were pretty small, for breakfast complete with candles and Mummy and Daddy singing
She opened presents
Two new movies (Oliver and Company and Peter Pan) A LeapPad Game (I always wanted this one Mumma!) and of course new books
We saved a couple gifts from her Aunts/Uncle (Annette, Pearl, and my brother and family) for after dinner
Instead of cupcakes for her class, she opted to take in Marvel Super Hero Popsicles
They were a huge hit with the boys in her class
Miss Barbara made her a Birthday Crown which she wore all day
When we arrived home, a neighbor and her kids had tied a balloon to our lamp post and decorated our walk way with a birthday message in chalk
Dinner was pancakes with extra butter/extra syrup followed by another cupcake (but no candle, just the cupcake please Mumma)
We did sing one more time and Lucy took great delight in our rendition of Happy Birthday (which climaxed with Sean holding the last note for way longer than I thought he could)
Phone calls from Noni, Papa, Auntie Cheetie, Uncle John, Auntie Christine and her cousins in OK took us right to bath time
We sat on the couch, the three of us, five if you count the cats, with the Red Sox game on in the background and read the 4 new books Lucy got as gifts
30 minutes later, we tucked her in
I laid with her for about 15 minutes
As we were snuggling, Lucy says
This has been the best birthday ever!
Oh good honey, I'm glad
I'm glad I was bornded... (not even a real word but that's how she says it)
Me too Lucy
Yeah, I bet you were happy when I finally got out of your belly
Yes Lucy, I was glad you finally came out so we could meet you
Oh, huh...she pauses in reflective thought....You didn't know me before I got in your belly?
Huh, bet that was crazy.....
What was crazy honey?
You got me and you didn't even know me....bet that was so crazy....good thing I liked you and Daddy when I came out
Yes Lucy, yes it was
But I didn't like you yesterday 'cause you yelled at me 'cause I wasn't bein' a good listener
Well Lucy, sometimes that happens...sometimes you're not a good listener, sometimes Mummy yells....and sometimes you don't like me too much...but that's ok, because no matter what, Daddy and I will always love you
Yes honey, even when we're yelling, we still love you
Even when you won't let me watch Mike the Knight or make me sit on the step
Yes honey, even then
Oh, ok Mumma....Mumma?
I like you again
Oh good Lucy, I'm glad
Yeah....'cause you gave me a cupcake for breakfast
This makes me laugh aloud
What's so funny Mumma?
You Lucy, you make me laugh
You're welcome Mumma!
I chuckle again, pull the covers up over her, bend down, kiss her goodnight and tell her I'll be back to check to her
She pops up into the sitting position
I need a balloon
I need a balloon to snuggle
She hops out of bed and chooses two balloons floating around on the floor to take into bed with her (taking great care to cover them up so they don't get cold)
Ok Luce, it's late, you need to get some sleep
Ok....so I'm a big girl now Mumma?
You sure are Lucy
Yep, you are 4
Are you and Daddy glad you got me?
Yes Lucy, yes we are....are you done stalling?
It means you keep asking me question or doing things so you don't go to sleep
Oh, then yeah, I'm stalling!
Go to sleep Lucy Ellen!
I love you Lucy
I love you too Mumma
Happy Birthday Lucy
Thanks Mumma, happy birthday
I just get to the door when she calls out again
You're my best Mumma!
Thanks Luce, you're my best girl
I'm really proud of you being my Mumma
Thanks Lucy - I'm proud to be your Mumma
Lucy lets out what sounds like a cross between a snort and a laugh and says in a matter of fact/no kidding/that's pretty obvious tone
Yeah you are
I have no words.....so I leave the room yelling I love you from outside the door
Lucy, Lucy, Lucy!
Happy Birthday from your Mum and Dad
We love you more than you will ever know
More today than yesterday but not as much as we will tomorrow
You make us crazy, you give us fits and starts and sometimes, you are a terrible listener and we yell, and sometimes, your temper tantrums are so epic we wonder what the hell we are supposed to do with you.....
You give the best hugs and are unbelievable snuggly
You are empathetic, compassionate, curious and intuitive
You are so astute; sometimes your observational skills and assessment overwhelm and intrigue me
You have a wicked sense of humor - it is witty, quick, disarming, sarcastic and sometimes, just downright silly (especially when it come to farting and butts and underwear)
Your love for books is one of my favorite things about you
When you are being read a book or looking at it on your own, you are transported in your own little head into the pages, into the story
It is great fun to watch your reaction to the words...to the pictures....to the story and your inrepretation of it
You love school.....you told me one day you loved learning so much you want to do it all the time
You adore your teacher Miss Barbara
I hope you are lucky enough to have many more teachers like her because they will instill in you a love for learning which will be with you forever and always
I've told people in the past that you are not, by nature or naturally, a sweet child
They always react by saying Maria! Don't say that! Lucy is too sweet
So I try to explain myself, sometimes clumsily, but here is my explanation:
You are not inherently sweet - it does not come naturally to you
Sometimes, I think it does not because you are busy sizing people up - assessing them, trying to determine if they do in fact deserve your sweetness
But here's the thing: when you decide you like someone?
When you decide someone deserves your sweetness, you give it to them
You do so with unbridled love and devotion
There is something about you Lucy that is so overwhelmingly endearing......
But not everyone gets it or you....that my dear is the way life is
But, those people that do get it?
Those that do see something in you and appreciate you?
Well, they see what Daddy and I see you in you
(Yes, a 4 year old has honesty and integrity....you tell on yourself all the time!)
You have unconditional love for those important to you
You are choosy
Not everyone gets your love - and there is nothing wrong with that
It will actually get you farther than most in the long run
You are stubborn, headstrong and opinionated - traits that will one day serve you well and traits I will never try to make you give up (though it would be great of you could temper them now and again)
You could try the patience of a saint and melt the heart of a curmudgeon.....I think you do both just because you like the challenge
Lucy Ellen, you are by far the greatest thing I have ever done in my life....
I thought I did pretty good landing your Dad but you, you are something else kiddo
I hope you know, I hope one day you realize and appreciate.......
What I'm trying to say Lucy is everything Daddy and I do, everything including
the taking away of TV
the sit on the steps and think about what you have done until the timer goes off
Everything including the trips to
the Science Museum
the Children's Museum
Maine and England
Everything including the countless hours of
Chutes and Ladders
playing with dinosaurs
collecting and storing your rocks
letting you lick the spoon while making brownies and eating the cookie dough (the horrors!)
Everything we do Lucy we do because....
We love and adore you
We do it because you have brought more light and love and yes, a few more tears, arguments and stress, into our lives than we ever thought we deserved or would have
You have given us so much more than "a legacy"
You have given our lives not meaning, but a new meaning
You've given our lives direction, balance. love, laughs, tears, fears, joy and peace
Thank you Lucy for being our daughter
Thank you for what you have brought to our lives....and thank you for what you will bring
We love you to the moon and back
All our love and God's Blessings
Maria the Mum