And today especially, I can't imagine a world without her. Today, I think back to every time I doubted whether this was the right decision (both during my pregnancy and during parenthood), and I laugh. I think back to every sad tear I've shed; every soul-wrenching spell of fear; every break my heart has suffered; every silent, sleepless night I endured; every negative word some awful man used to try to sway my decision, and I laugh. Looking back, it all seems so pointless. I think back to every happy tear I've shed; every soul-wrenching spell of joy; every triumph my heart has known; every loud, sleepless night I endured; every positive word from my family and friends have used to support me, and I laugh.
I laugh because this year is worth it. It's so worth all of it. As strange as it sounds, it's worth all the fear of the unknown, and it's worth every ounce of joy I've experienced. It's worth the lonely nights, and it's worth the busy days.
Mornings like this morning, as I walk into her nursery and she's awake, sitting up and peering at me through the railings, and she squeals with glee and pulls herself up and, with her jerky little movements, sidesteps along the length of the crib to get to me. She reaches up to me and I whisk her away from the confines of her little wooden bed. And she laughs and screeches in pure joy. She's happy that I'm hers, and I'm happy that she's mine. It's mornings like these mornings that force my eyes and my soul to focus on the little girl in my arms. And it's mornings like these mornings that force me awake by pounding the words "and there was a time that you thought you couldn't do this" into my head.
I don't know what she's thinking today. She won't remember this, and that's fine. But I'll remember today. I'll remember all the hours of baking rainbow-colored cakes and buying rainbow-colored candy and tying rainbow-colored tulle onto rainbow-colored ribbons so that we can celebrate the sunburst that's found her way into our lives and into our hearts.
There was a time that I spent endless days and nights crying as I worried about how I was going to explain why Sol doesn't have a normal family. But you know what? I had no idea what I was in for. Sol has a perfect, beautiful, hodge-podge family. And that family is going to be with her today to celebrate her life. They're going to be there to celebrate just how much joy she's brought us in the last year. Those people are going to hug and kiss and love on her all day long. Sol is going to be spending her birthday with her family. This girl has become a little celebrity, with a bigger family than I ever imagined we would have. To all my family and friends who love my daughter; to all of our readers and Facebook friends who have come to know and love Sol, thank you. What a beautiful family Sol has :)