Friday, October 2, 2009

2 Years

James,
Where do I begin? This has been a big year for you. As your mother, I have been blessed to watch you grow into an amazing little boy. You are a very sweet, very tender child. You love to snuggle, especially in the middle of the night! You have to have your bankie(blankie)to go to sleep and occasionally you ask for punky(your monkey) at bed time too. Just recently you have started resisting bed time. You used to go down no problem at 7:30 on the dot but now you think of every excuse in the book to stay up longer. Seems like you are gonna be THAT kid, the one who never wants to go to bed! You still love reading books and I think that if I would (could) read to you all day long you'd be satisfied with that. Music is another thing you love, especially things with catchy tunes to them. You love to go to church and sing church songs. Last year when I wrote to you I told you one of your favorite times of the day is when daddy gets home. Well, that hasn't changed. You ask about daddy at least 3 times a day and when you hear the door chime you shout "DADDY" and run to the back door! You still love to wrestle with daddy and you especially love to have your toes tickled. (That's an excuse you use to try and get me to take your shoes off during the day!!) For the most part you and your sister get along splendidly and you have a wonderful relationship. You ask about her in the morning if you get up before her. You fight a lot more now but I attribute that to your age. You still think she is hilarious and every now and then I see you being sweet to her for no reason. You don't like to share with her but it is easier to get you to share a book or toy than food. Don't even think about asking you to share your food with her or any one else for that matter! You took your first step all by your self the night before we moved into our new house and you started walking officially a few days after you turned 18 months. Your language skills have really taken off within the last 2 months as well as your charm skills. The minute you sense "trouble" you flash me this toothy grin and pucker up for a kiss. You make it extremely hard to discipline you sometimes! You repeat almost every thing you hear and can say 5-6 word sentences. In March of this year you were diagnosed with Cerebral Palsy. It was a total shock to me and your daddy and it was a hard thing to accept. But the Lord, once again, gave us grace and mercy and strength to endure and blessed you with a wonderful spirit and strong will. As of today the CP that affects your little body seems to be an exceptionally mild form and the only visible problem you have is your left leg. You had to start wearing an AFO (ankle/foot orthotic) to keep you from walking on your tippy toe so that the calf muscle will start to grow properly in your left leg and hopefully, one day, be able to walk heel to toe. Even more hopefully, not have to wear a brace at all! In May you started receiving PT every week from a really nice Physical Therapist, Ms. April, who comes to our house. A few weeks ago she bumped it down to once a month because you are doing so well!! I also enrolled you in the state program "Babies Can't Wait" which is Georgia's early intervention program. You were automatically eligible because of the diagnosis of CP and it is totally free! Ms. Cherie is the Speech and Language Pathologist for BCW and she comes to our house every week but mostly just for observation. So far you are not behind in anything!! You and Audrey have formed a delightful relationship with both April and Cherie and you respond very well to them. Your daddy and I love you James Bryant, with all of our heart and soul. You have been such a blessing to our lives and we thank God every day for the precious gift of your life.

Audrey,
You my dear are my little sunshine. You are such a happy, delightful and tender child. I am so blessed to be your mama and to be able to watch you grow into an amazing little girl. You may have enough sass in your little body to make up 3 Scarlet O'Hara's but you have the love of 3 Melanie's to go with it. You take care of your brother constantly; always making sure he has what you have. (Unless of course it is your favorite book or toy, then there is a throw down!) The two words you say the most these days are "Bubba take, bubba take." You love to read books and, like your brother, you'd be satisfied to read books all day long. Unlike your big bro, you love bed time. A few times you have even asked to go to bed saying "Get bankie, pappy and go seep". You've just started asking for a baby doll to go to sleep with but usually, as long as you have your pappy you are golden. You love going to church and singing church songs and you also love to dance to music I play on the ipod. The faster the tune and the louder the music the more you like it! You took your first steps in the days following Thanksgiving, much to the disappointment of all the family that spent almost every moment that week watching you to try and see your first steps! You love to chalk (draw) and you hold your crayon or marker like someone who can actually write. It's amazing how advanced you are. You have been talking in 5-6 word sentences and repeating every thing you hear for some time now. You love to put puzzles together and keen, keen(clean, clean). I am constantly finding you with some sort of wipie in your hand wiping down things. The floor and the wall are your most common targets and you always sing some tune while you are cleaning. I sure hope the habit of loving to clean sticks with ya! You absolutely adore your daddy and I am always teasing him saying the two of you make me sick with the way you love each other! But you still want mommy when you are scared or hurt! In the days following your brothers diagnosis of Cerebral Palsy you were the only bright part in those days. It was like you knew something was wrong so you tried extra hard to make us smile or laugh and you always succeeded. You were very good during those days too, I hardly had to get on to you. Even at this young age I think you have the instinct of a mother. You are quick to comfort Bubba when he is hurt, like bringing him his pappy, tenderly putting it in his mouth for him and patting him on the head. You have no problem sharing food with him as long as it was your idea to do so. If he just reaches over in your bowl and grabs a handful of what ever is in there(which happens often)you don't like that at all and let everybody know it with this horribly shrill scream you have mastered in your short two years of life! You are still the wiggle worm, always moving and always talking, talking, talking! Your daddy and I love you so much Peach, and thank God every day for blessing us with the gift of your life.

My darling children,No matter where life takes you, what lies ahead for you as individuals or us as a family, I want you to know how very much I love you. And how very much I need you. I strive daily to be a God honoring mother, to raise you up in the way that you should go. To make sure you know how very much I love you and how special you are to me. I fall short though, I know I do and there are many nights I go to sleep just knowing that I have totally messed you up, so sure that all my efforts have been in vain; that everything I have done is wrong. But I wake up the next morning to see your beautiful smiling faces and feel those short little arms around my neck squeezing me tight. Or I witness a beautiful exchange of hugs between the two of you, unsolicited by me and I think that maybe, just maybe, I have done something right! We have stressful days around here for sure. We've shed lots of tears in two years and I'm sure there is more to come. But, when I think about our life together, about our family, I hear laughter and see smiles and feel arms around me tight. I see us dancing and singing and just enjoying life. If I had to use one word to describe our family it would JOYFUL. I love you my darlings, for ever and ever. Love, Mama

video

6 comments:

Emily said...

HAPPY, HAPPY BIRTHDAY JAMES AND AUDREY! I can't believe how quickly the time has passed!

Amanda, you and Jon have some awesome kiddos - much to the credit of their incredible parents.

We love you lots and hope the birthday weekend is full of fun!

Love,
Eric, Emily, and Gabriela

Dianne said...

Sigh. Sniff. Beautiful, 'manda. And, I love having this window into your daily lives. A blessing. An honor. You and Jon are doing this parenting thing in a way that makes me want to try again. I admire your spirits. Your energy. Your love for these babies which is evident and in living color in every post. Happy Birthday James & Audrey!

Becky said...

thanks for msking me cry

~sydney~ said...

James and Audrey,
What a fun time we had this year for our birthdays! We got to spend the entire weekend together at the Good Hope Association. We made so many many memories! I hope you both know that you two have my heart!

Love you always,
Seeeenny

"MY cake. MY seat. MY table. MY this. MY that!"

su said...

That is awesome! Amanda, I think you really did capture your family in the word- Joyful. Others do see it, and we are so blessed that you share it with us. I can't think of a more beautiful weekend I've had - so blessed to share your 2nd birthday My Beauties,in the Lord's House- how perfect- and with the 16 year old who shares your birthday- and who deserves honor for the lovely Christian young lady she has become.

His Mercy Endureth Forever said...

Happy Birthday to James and Audrey! I can't believe how fast they've grown. Your family is so beautiful and you're a great Mom! Thanks for the updates!