CLAIRE IS ONE.

Sunday, November 22, 2015
At 7:49 this morning, Claire finished her 365th day of life. If a birthday marks the end of a chapter, then Claire's first just closed with a very happily ever after. Claire has been a gift. And to think that our our blessed time with her is just beginning!!

Nervous doesn't begin to describe how I felt at exactly seven months pregnant with Claire. I was terrified. I felt absolutely incapable of caring for another tiny, completely dependent person at that point in my life. And yet there I was, so pregnant, and nothing was going to change that fact or my pending future of becoming Mother to another. Episodes of breaking down into tears were not uncommon. Most of those tears were silent, though. Only I saw them. When I cleaned, cooked, or drove, my thoughts would drift ahead to my future of caring for two and I cried. I knew what it took to have and nurture a newborn -- time, tenacity, grit, energy, endurance. Love. Surely I'd hit my caps on those traits -- between Ryan, Olivia, neighbors, friends, family far away, and my business, I was at my limits. There was next-to-nothing that I could do more for anyone. How could I do more? How could I care for my Claire? 

Then one day, while waiting at a stop light, inally, miraculously a strong thought came and took over my thoughts' stage:

"You have no idea, Jeni...you can't even begin to fathom how this baby girl will care for you."

Within weeks, as life took some sad turns for me, it was Claire, of all people, that brought me the most peace through that low valley. Her heavenly spirit calmed my troubled heart. Holding her alone put life right. This child needed nothing more than love. She taught me what Olivia had taught me two long years before -- what more is there to life, if it isn't to give and feel love? Nothing. No thing. Plus, this child needed me desperately. She loved me and I felt it.

I thought I knew then, even just through those first weeks and months of her life, how she had cared for me. But time marched on, and so did Claire with peace in her wake -- for our entire family. Olivia would often say, "Mom, can I just hode Quare for a sec? Just a sec?" Because holding her dipped us into heaven. Still does! We are each so blessed by Claire's ability to calm.

I may think I know what, even through this first year of her life, how Claire has cared for us all. But I really don't think I do. Just as Olivia brings out the extreme happy for this clan, and heaven knows what kind of joy we're in for with her, the same goes for Claire and her calm. What has been has been incredible. But if I've learned anything about life, the best is yet to be.

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An ode to Claire, via never-before-seen photos. From her birth, to a newborn bath with my dear dear Grandma, to her blessing day, and beyond through May. These photos from that time bring me a concrete, hard to describe joy. Those months were stage-setters for the following to come that became her incredible, has-been first year. I love you, Claire!


1 comment:

  1. I love your blog. And everything you write. And how God is sooooooooooo good to each of us in our own unique circumstances. Bless you, sweet girl, and this sweet Claire of yours!

    ReplyDelete

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