Dear BEAUTIFUL Addison,
Twenty-three months today. This is your last milestone before you turn two. They call it the terrible two's, but I'm convinced two couldn't possibly be terrible, compared to your first year of life. You've grown so much the past 6 months, physically (that's obvious right?!) but more importantly, you've grown a little more independent and a LOT more stubborn. You were born a fighter - whether its forcing me to let you walk in socks-only through the parking lot at therapy, or defying the odds and learning new skill after new skill unexpectedly. You want what you want and no one is going to change your mind - I hope you never lose that! Even if it is making daily routines with you extra aggravating! :)
I am so so proud of how hard you are working for Miss A in therapy, especially speech. After an entire year of speech therapy two hours a week, you've finally hit a stride with your verbal skills, you have a handful of clear, spontaneous words and another dozen or so approximations. Here is a sample of what you are saying on a regular basis:
baby (your favorite word!)
EAT! - I included the exclamation because that is exactly how you say it: you dont; you scream it.
dooz (juice) just this week, so its not super-clear
'yeah' - her answer to everything you ask her :)
boot - the kid adores trying on shoes, not sure where she got that from.... haha
mol (molly, my parents dog)
papa (my dad - he was sooo excited, hes spent hours trying to get her to say grandpa this summer.)
Your secret talent? Animal noises. Granted, we literally did nothing else at therapy for like 5 months except drill you on them, but you have them all and you make a pretty darn cute little chicken!
You are so proud of yourself. You puff up your little chest with pride everytime you successfull do something I ask of you. You are getting good at 'remembering' our routines, and you have 'jobs' you love to do: putting the diapers in the diaper pail and garbage in the garbage. You get angry if someone else throws your diaper away and doesn't offer the job to you. You love to be a helper.
You kiss Audrina about 7 million times per day. You will just stop what you are doing and go bat your eyelashes at her and squeeze her little hand "BABY!!!!!!!" You are incredible little friends and I have a feeling by this time next year, God willing, you will be running around chasing one another.
You discovered taking your diaper off, and to save our poor blog friends a terrible mental picture, I'll simply share that you combined two of your favorite things the other day: poop and fingerpainting. YUCK! Please don't do that again!! It made me really sad and reminded me of your C-diff fighting days, you fell asleep and never called for Mommy to let me know you had a problem. :( It makes mommy feel like crap (no pun intended) knowing you were in there laying in it - I know I had no way of knowing, but I wish you would understand to yell for me when something like that happens.
I'm a little worried about how much you've been sleeping. You are practically begging for a nap by noon and go down happily - I have to wake you up at 4 and you are groggy and don't want to get up. You are going right to sleep and sleeping a good 14 hours a night. Twice Daddy or I have gone to get you up and you fall back asleep on your bedroom floor. Part of me wants to just let you sleep if your body is telling you that you need it. Your play skills are getting a little better, but you still have a hard time understand how to play with toys. A lot of time you just wander, watching everyone.... You love to laugh and smile and chase your big sisters around.
I hope this is the last birthday that this stupid disease that has changed us both forever remains a mystery. Its robbed you of your babyhood - and that's what makes me the most sad. You'd never know it by your gorgeous smile, but you've suffered more pain, more invasive and uncomfortable procedures and hurdles than most grownups. And here you are, smiling like your life is the most amazing thing ever. Because it is. See, it's not until adulthood that we learn to feel sorry for ourselves. You aren't sorry for being you... you just love life!
So many are praying for you, thinking of you, cheering you on sweetheart. Daddy and I are your biggest fans and you bring an unreal amount of joy to our lives - so many of my smiles start with you baby. You are inspiring people everywhere, so keep fighting. You are courageous, tough, beautiful, and sassy.
God has you so close at hand. You have a very special purpose in the lives of all the people who have learned about you through the blog.... I can't wait to see how your story unfolds. But for now, I'm thrilled to be spending all our time together! Stay little, sweetpea.
I'll end this with a perfect quote for you:
"I have heard there are troubles of more than one kind.
Some come from ahead, and some come from behind.
But I've bought a big bat. I'm all ready you see...
Now my troubles are going to have troubles with me!”
― Dr. Seuss