Tuesday, May 4, 2010

Happy Birthday Gracen

Well, I told you that today was a big day around here....It's Gracen's birthday!!! She is one year old. I can hardly believe that it has already been a year. I vividly remember this morning one year ago. I was so ready to see that precious little life that had been growing inside of me for 9 months, and I was so ready to have the pregnancy stage over with and behind me.

Gene left for work this morning around 7:20, and right before he left we were talking about what we were doing at this time in 2009. He was probably eating a biscuit and I was laying in my hospital bed, waiting and praying.

We arrived at the hospital around 5:15 a.m. for my induction and it probably took until about 7:00 to get checked in, dressed in the hospital garb, and get connected to the I.V., etc. I certainly don't remember moment to moment, but I do remember how nervous I was, how yucky I felt at times due to changes in my blood pressure, and how comforting it was to have Gene, my parents, and Gene's mother in the room with me. I think the doctor broke my water somewhere around 10:00 and I was fully dilated by 12:00 and ready to push. I had an epidural and by this point I couldn't feel a thing...thank the Lord. I remember those pushes. It felt so surreal, like I wasn't really doing it. Part of me couldn't believe that I was actually having a baby after nearly 13 years of marriage. That is still a miraculous thought to me.

Both moms stayed in the room and of course, Gene was by my side, as well. I pushed about 30 minutes and then I heard the doctor say something like, "Look down....look down...here she comes." I did look down and saw her as she entered the world. It was amazing! Simply amazing! Words could never express that moment and I won't even try to do it justice here. She arrived at 12:37 p.m. and weighed 7 lb. 10 oz. She was absolutely perfect with a rosy complexion and a head full of black hair. To say that I fell in love the moment I saw her is an understatement. I loved her fully and completely in that moment and that love only grows day after day.

Gene and I were completely content with one child, with the blessing that God had given us with Reagan, and we were O.K. with the fact that we would never conceive and never give birth to a child. Oh my...how that little girl opened our eyes and our hearts to something that we didn't even know was missing. It didn't take long to realize that we could never go back to being a family of three.

My doctor, Matthew Phillips is a strong christian man, and I remember him saying verses from Psalm 139 and offering God a prayer of thanksgiving right after I delivered her. At that moment, the following verses came to life as never before....

Psalm 139:13-16 "For You formed my inward parts; You wove me in my mother's womb. I will give thanks to You, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made; Wonderful are Your works, And my soul knows it very well. My frame was not hidden from You, when I was made in secret, and skillfully wrought in the depths of the earth; Your eyes have seen my unformed substance; and in Your book were all written, the days that were ordained for me, when as yet there was not one of them."

Oh, what a precious gift we were given on May 4, 2009. I will never be the same.

Here is an early picture of Gracen. She is about 2 1/2 months in this shot. Unfortunately, I do not have any earlier pictures saved on this laptop that I am currently using.

And here she is at 11 months. I think I have probably shared this picture before, but I just love that big smile.

We are celebrating Gracen's birthday with a family party/cookout this coming Saturday night at 5:00. I am so excited about her celebration. I have all the food and the decorations ready to go. Just waiting on the big day! I will certainly be posting those pictures.
****Below is a short birthday note to Gracen.
Happy Birthday my sweet little Gracen...my little bit...my little Miss May. Words could never express how much I love you. Your Daddy and Reagan are pretty crazy about you too. You have brought so much joy to all of our lives. You are so special, a miracle gift from God above. You arrived after 13 years of marriage and 10 years of trying to conceive a child. We are still overcome with joy that you are part of our family.
You fulfilled so many desires in me. Because of you I know what it feels like to carry a baby, what if feels like to feel a baby move inside of me, what it is like to watch my stomach grow and stretch and grow some more...just when I thought it couldn't possibly get any bigger, what it is like to throw up and be excited about it, what it is like to see a precious life on an ultrasound screen and be amazed, what it is like to be scared to death of delivery day, what it is like to be excited about every centimeter of dilation, what it is like to receive an epidural, what it is like to push a child into this world, what it is like to nurse my own flesh and blood, and what it is like to look into the face of a child that our love created...a face that looks mostly like your Daddy, but that's O.K. I happen to like his face. You certainly have some of my traits as well. You have my crooked pinky finger, my nose, my round cheeks, and I am so sorry, but as of today, you have my thighs. Maybe they will slim up as you start to walk more and more.
I love your sweet little smile.
I love your easy disposition.
I love your your little chubby fingers and chubby toes.
I love your brown (turning blond) hair.
I love your wobbly little walk.
I love that you are an awesome sleeper.
I love that you will ride in the car all day, if I need you to.
I love your laugh.
I love your beautiful eyes....eyes that look just like your Daddy's.
I love that I spend my days with you.
I love that you said Ma Ma before you said Da Da.
I love your constant humming of the "mmmmmm" sound.
I love every single thing about you and wouldn't change a thing.
Know that I pray for you everyday. My prayer for you is the same prayer that I pray for your big sister, that you would come to know Jesus Christ as your personal Savior. You will find no lasting worth or satisfaction in this life apart from Him. We hope you see Jesus in us as we raise you by His strength and wisdom. I am so thankful for you, so thankful that I am your Mommy. Your daddy and I will always love and support you in all things. I am looking forward to this next year with you.


  1. I still remember the days leading up to you finding out you were pregnant! The wondering but the disbelief that it could really be happening to you! I remember being so excited (& yet bawling) the day you found out & called to tell me! God is so GOOD!!!!

    Happy Birthday Gracen! I can't believe it's been a year! You have blessed all of us, most of all your wonderful parents who love you dearly!!! We can't wait to watch you grow up...just not to fast!

  2. How precious! I love loving on that sweet baby! I can't imagine loving any child more than I love my DeVaughn girls...I know one day my kids are going to have great role models in both Reagan and Gracen. Thanks for sharing this and your sweet babies with me.

  3. Happy Birthday Gracen! What a sweet, sweet post!

  4. Oh, Lesley.....that is such a beautiful letter to your Gracen......your whole family is so blessed! I so enjoy having Gracen on Sundays in the nursery and will be sad when she moves up to the next class but thrilled at the same time that you have another precious one to watch her grow up. Many blessings to Gracen on her first birthday.