To my precious Eleri,
You are 2. I can hardly believe it. I know that it sounds like a cheesy mom thing to say, but I remember the day that you were born like it was yesterday. Let me correct that; I remember certain things about that day as clear as if it were something that happened 5 minutes ago.
I remember that I listened to Jack Johnson and Stereophonics on repeat the entire labour/birth process. To this day, those are your favourite. Sure you like 'wheels on the bus' and 'itsy, bitsy spider' but put on some jack or the phonics and you rock out like nothing else. Looks like good music was instilled in you from the beginning.
I remember wanting your daddy by my side the entire time. Not once did he leave me. You carry that same attachment to your daddy. From the minute you were born, you had your daddy's heart. You can make him laugh, cry and dance around like a fool like no one else can. The day you were born 2 years ago, you daddy did everything to make sure you were ok. His attitude towards you has not changed one bit. He would lay down his life if it meant you would have a better one. I will never forget the look on your daddy's face the first time he saw you. And I will never get tired of seeing that same look, full of love and affection, every time he looks at you. It is a bond that cannot be broken.
I remember the very second that you were born. It was a mix of utter relief and intense fear. You were dark purple. and you were not breathing. I was afraid that there was something wrong. I was afraid you might not make it through. I had not even seen you for more than 5 minutes in the real world and my heart was ripping in two at the thought of losing you. It was a long 5 or 6 minutes until you started to cry and breath normally. In the grand scheme of life, 5 minutes is not long. But precious little one, mommy thought you were slipping away, and with you my entire heart. I have never heard such a beautiful noise as the first sounds you made. You may have been purple for a while, but what a beautiful purple baby you were.
The past two years have been full of memories. We have shared some wonderful times as a family and some rough times too. In your 2 years of life we have moved between 3 different countries and countless houses. You have travelled and experienced more in your short life than most adults. And the amazing thing is the grace and flexibility with which you do it. you are incredibly laid back, it takes a lot to 'ruffle your feathers' so to speak. You have handled our family transitions so well, sweet pea. Not even 4 months ago we moved to a country that you had only visited 3 times before. The people, the weather, the time zone- everything was different. And you adapted so well. You are so easy going, it is a joy to watch. Mommy can learn a lot from your sweet spirit and gentle nature.
Maybe it is the fact that you are so curious. You love to explore and learn new things. You are not afraid of anything. You jump right in. You literally jump right in when it comes to the pool- face first, underwater like you were born to do. It won't be too long before you are swimming unassisted. and you are only 2! you are willing to try new things no matter what they are. Granted, you are a bit more reserved when it comes to trying new food, but we are working on that. You are friendly and outgoing; your truly do not know a stranger. Even at 2 we are able to see so much of your personality shine through and what an amazing little person you are!
As far as accomplishments, there are far too many to mention. These past 2 years you have amazed daddy and me in a new way everyday. You know your colours, shapes (even funny shapes like octagon and hexagon) your Numbers to 10 and are even getting the numbers in Welsh. You are talking now and it is precious to hear your putting words together to form little, eleri sentences. I wish I could put into words how much you comprehend, but I dont know how to explain it. You are a genius. plain and simple. As for toys, Mickey and Minnie mouse are you favourite, but nothing can break the bond between you and your dog Oliver. He still goes everywhere with us.
I dont know what you will be when you grow up, and I don't know if the things that you like now will be the things you like in a year from now. But if today is anything to go on- you will be an athlete. Your hand eye coordination is incredible. You love balls and you especially love to kick. Daddy and I are putting you in soccer in the fall and I can't wait to see your face when you get to run around and kick balls on a giant field. You are so tough, so strong and so rough and tumble. You love anything that involves energy and I can't wait to see where that takes you.
Mommy and Daddy are incredibly proud of you, Eleri. In only 2 years you have filled our lives with more joy than we could have ever thought possible. I started off this letter telling you the things I remembered about the day you were born. So I will leave you with this one last thing. A few hours after you were born, and everyone had left for the night, it was just me and you. It was around midnight and I was exhausted. Birthing a child is hard work! I had just shut my eyes and was drifting off to sleep when you started to cry. I quickly scooped you up in my arms and started walking around the room. I was so tired and so nervous about it being just me and you that I didn't even know what to say/sing/do to help calm you down. So, through tear filled eyes, I started reciting my favourite Bible verses to you and within minutes you were still. You had wrapped your little hand around my finger and when I looked down at your face, there was a tiny smile. I know they say a baby a few hours old is too young to smile, but there it was. a smile. just for mommy. My heart melted and I knew my life would never be the same.
You are my little miracle Eleri. I could not dream of anything better for my life than to have you in it. I have so many hopes and dreams for you, but most of all my prayer for you is that just like that first night in the hospital, the word of God will always speak to your heart and govern your life. You are an incredible blessing not just to mommy and daddy, but to everyone you meet. I can't believe you are already 2. It has been an incredible 2 years, I can't wait for many more.
With more love than you could imagine,