Letter to my firstborn.

Luci Belle,

How much I've treasured these last three-and-a-half years with just you.  We've had so much fun together, haven't we? 

My first thought is of our hundreds of walks together, first when I carried you nestled in the Moby wrap so I could kiss your head as we walked; then with you happily bobbing on my back in the backpack around the neighborhood or to the nature center; all our stroller walks where you asked me to stop so you could collect a dandelion or a pinecone; navigating your newfound freedom as you wanted to walk or run by yourself. 

We've been artistic together - coloring and painting rocks and rainbows, gluing paper and popsicle sticks.  We've danced and twirled in the living room.  Then you became a ballerina and twirled on your own, asking if you looked beautiful.

We've had lots of cuddles, just the three of us - you, me, and Daddy.  It's these ordinary, everyday moments that are the best.

Being your mommy is so wonderful but it's also a way God refines me. I've had to ask for your forgiveness multiple times for speaking harshly or treating you unkindly, for being too obsessed some days with order and neatness than with embracing the fleeting moments of your childhood.  I've had my share of ugly moments when I let the many ways that we are different cause me frustration.  Thank you for always forgiving me when I've asked you to, and for learning how to repent and be forgiven when you've done things that have hurt others.

The last weeks of my pregnancy are winding down, and things are going to be different soon.  I'll be Mommy to another little girl, and my heart won't love you less, it'll just expand to include her now.  You'll have to share your room, your clothes, and your toys.  You'll have to share Mommy and Daddy's laps and our attention.  But I'm excited for you, because these are all part of being a sibling, and I know you'll be such a loving big sister, as I've seen you be with so many children younger than you.

Other things are going to stay the same.  You'll always be my first baby. You'll always be the first child that opened up my heart to the indescribable joy of motherhood.  And we'll still make sure to have special times together, just us, cuddling or reading books or taking walks.

As we welcome a new little one into our family and embrace this new stage in our journey together as a family of four, I want you to know how wide, how long, how high, how deep is the love of Jesus for you.  I'm so very proud of you - not because of what you've done but because of how you've opened your heart to joy and love and wonder in the people and world around you. 

No matter what you do or who you are, know that I love you...to the moon and stars and all the planets and back, a bazillion times a bazillion.