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IMG_5993Dear Abby,

You jump and jump and jump. Two feet off the floor. Bouncing. Hopping. “Like a rabbit.” “Like a monkey (who has to be continually reminded not to fall off of the bed…the chair…the stairs…the box…).”

You chatter loudly. Insistently. With great gusto. With a vocabulary that astounds me. With an attitude that makes me pull my hair out and love you even more.

You demand independence, yet crave companionship. We are constantly embroiled, you and I. Sometimes cuddling. Often engaged in a battle of the wills. Sometimes making muffins together. Often working out compromises. Praying. Singing songs from my childhood. “Life without Jesus is like a donut, like a donut, because there is a hole in the middle of your heart…IMG_6035

After putting you down for a nap today, I considered pouring myself a glass of bourbon. No joke. Then, instead, I drifted briefly off to sleep while you finally quieted on the monitor.

Today you are just two months shy of 2 years old, and my heart can’t believe time has grown my baby into such a little girl. Everyday you astound me with your curiosity and your energy. Your emotion and your empathy. Your stubbornness and your will. I don’t believe “placid or calm” will ever be words used to describe you. IMG_5984

As I pray for you, I don’t pray for a well-behaved child. I’m coming to terms that you will “embarrass” me in public. (FYI, I’ll return the favor one day.) This is a season of parenthood that is just hard, but I don’t want to quench the strong woman you were made to be. BUT, I do want to mold your heart to love. To know when and where to submit and respect. To use your words and your charisma wisely. To lead people in noble causes. To harness your passion to do good and to go on great adventures. In the meantime, sometimes even shopping at Target with you is too much for me to handle.

We have a lot of plans on the horizon. One day soon, I need to actually give potty training a legitimate attempt. We are traveling in Texas nearly the entire month of March. Your daddy graduates from Mines in May, and life will drastically change, as a new job and home start the summer. Prayers are still constant for that job, but we believe that God has amazing plans for our family.

These are long days with you. I run out of energy long before you do, but sidelining myself is not an option. I hope to grow in creativity, as you grow in understanding.

I love you, Baby Girl. As I sing to you and rock you at night with your cup of milk, Bear and Wubby pacifier, I’m reminded that in your heart you are still so little. You DO need me. No matter how much you argue with me, I’m still your mama and you will forever be my beloved Abigail Nichelle. Cheers to 22 months and to my favorite Abby in the whole wide world.

~Your Mama~ IMG_5827

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