8 years ago I was in labor with my first child, my beautiful daughter, Libby Anne Hope. I remember when I had her. It was 10:39 a.m. and she had finally come into this world. I remember her first cry and the subsequent tears that spilled down my cheeks. She was here. She was alive. All was well.
She was the only one of my five children that I was allowed to really hold after birth. She was the only one who wasn't whisked away from me to go the ICU or special nursery. Libby came out alert. Wide awake and looking at the world. Her dark blueberry eyes taking in everything around her. I had never seen a newborn so alert and so aware.
She was my comfort. After losing my sister just six months before holding my Libby was a healing balm. She brought me hope. She reminded me of life. And that it was worth living. I believe she was the main reason I didn't go wild, or crazy or lose my mind when my sister died. I was pregnant and I couldn't do anything that would not in turn also affect my unborn child. I had to eat because she needed nutrition. I didn't drink, smoke, do drugs, or party. I had to cope without anything to sedate me. I lived with my grief fully aware not dulled by alcohol or pain killers.
I remember the joy that flooded me as I looked into the precious eyes of my daughter. Her dark black hair was thick and beautiful. She was beautiful. 7lbs., 7 oz. She was slender and long. Just as she is today.
Her eyes are now a beautiful green just like my husband's. Her hair lightened and is a beautiful light brown.
I am always amazed at her thoughtfulness. Her compassion and sensitivity. Her laughter and her silliness. The beautiful songs that come from her lips and the lightness of her dance. She is unencumbered by the burdens that threaten to consume me at times. She is a lovely girl. A wonderful older sister to her four brothers. She is their protector, director, and leader.
She is dramatic, expressive and emotional. She is tender-hearted. She has seen her brothers suffer, particularly Samuel and she did not shy away. She came forward. she held his hand as he cried. She grabbed a wet cloth for Samuel when he threw up. She cried at the loss of his hair.
Just last night we were discussing Samuel and she told someone. "you know, it took him a year to get rid of the cancer. We're not sure if it's growing or not. That's what the test is for. We hope it isn't going to come back." I didn't realize how much she understood or has processed. Even now I still don't know how she has perceived it all. I know her hope is in God. And I'm seeing him do a marvelous work in her.
Happy Birthday Libby. I am so grateful to see all God has done in you these past 8 years. Keep trusting Jesus. He will sustain us to the end. I love you more with each passing day. I am crazy about you!