five years old

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You.

With all your laughter.  With all your curiosity, your creativity.  Your huge imagination.  Your happy approach to life.

I just marvel over you.  The unexpected and undeserved gift that you are and continue to be to me, to us, to this family.  In a hundred ways, you are wild grace to me from the Lord.

You’re my first, and in basically every way, you pave the way.  That can be a hard burden to bear, my girl, but I know the Lord equipped you specifically for that role.  This year with you has been so full of change.  You seemed to have transformed slowly before our very eyes into this grown up little girl child.  Still young at heart and little, but different somehow.  This year has been both death + life to us.  In the very middle of the year, we found out about your diagnosis with Celiacs disease, which felt very much like a death sentence in some ways.  Death to whatever was normal before.  I look at everything basically though the lens of “that was before we knew,” and “this is after we found out.”  And yet, that very same month, you so quietly decided to give your heart to Jesus.  I was skeptical at first that you really understood what you were doing, but I have SEEN HIM so change you.  How can that be?  I can’t explain it.  But a huge shift happened after that, and you have been such a conduit of grace in our family since then.  I have seen Him working in your heart, I have seen you become so repentant over any sin, and such a desire for God on your own, independent of our promptings.  How can this be for a four-year-old?  I don’t know, I can’t understand it.  But it is precious.

I love the way you pray.  The way you run in at night to your sister’s room as I’m putting her to sleep, the way you run in to pray over her and to sing her “Jesus Loves Me,” and kiss her goodnight.  The way you are protective over your brother + sister, and love on them so well.  The sweet bond I see forming between all of you, even amidst the days where there is fighting and tears.

I love the way you put creatures to sleep in tiny beds all over our house and dress up in the most gawdy of outfits, layers upon layers of tutus and dresses.  I love the way you still have to start the day with snuggle time with me first, and the way you don’t really feel like the day has begun until we’ve had that time.  I love your love for books and stories.  I love the way your coloring has taken off to a whole new artistic level the past few weeks.

You are hilarious and fun and I think you are a light to everyone who knows you.  Which is why we named you Phoebe, our little ray of light.  You are my girl forever and I adore you so much.  I look so forward to all that is ahead in the year to come!

Happy 5th birthday.  Now, how ’bout those birthday spankings!?

Love
Momma

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