Thursday, September 12, 2013


Happy 4th Birthday Peanut -

Momma woke up this morning and spent some time snuggled up in bed simply remembering this day in 2009.  A day that began just like any other, and ended with a tiny, beautiful, perfect little gift nick-named Peanut, thanks to one of the delivery nurses, who changed my life and the world forever.  Momma outlined the details of the day in a post on your 2nd birthday, back in 2011: Happy 2nd Birthday.

Peanut, I will never forget the unbridled joy that filled my heart the moment I glimpsed your head with its dark blonde fuzz, your grasping hands, and hungry mouth.  The electric love that shot through my heart the first time we locked eyes...I felt you gaze into and capture my soul.  A connection that has never faded, regardless of the fact that I can't physically hold, touch, hug or kiss you.

I wonder what kind of birthday party we would have hosted for you this year?  Dinosaur themed?  Football or soccer?  Jake and the Neverland Pirates? Or rockets and trains?  Would you and your friends be climbing trees and wrestling in the yard?  Would you still have your voracious appetite and love for all foods, tastes and spices?  Your love of music and dancing which never failed to evoke your brilliant smile and belly laugh?

Yesterday, as Momma prepared her heart for this milestone, I came across an e-mail exchange with Dadda from January 20, 2011.  Just days before you left for heaven.  It was a funny conversation, with Momma explaining your school had called to let me know you hurt your lip while playing piano.  What?  Hurt your lip playing piano?!?  Dadda and I both immediately had a picture of you shucking, jiving, bouncing and grooving while playing the instrument.  It cracked us both up and we agreed we couldn't wait to see the injury that evening.

That incident and the laughter it provoked was long forgotten in Momma's memory bank.  What a gift to retrieve it, to remember the joy you brought our family through the tiniest, silliest actions.  And to see the connection between you and your little brother.

Today I remember you with laughter and dance.  I honor you through smile-filled tears.  And, I hold you close in my heart.  Dadda and Momma celebrate your birthday because this day in 2009 marks the moment when we realized life will never be the same.  Never could we have known what that meant four years ago.  But through the best and worst moments, through the grief and joy, we have been guided by the love and hope you brought to our world.  Tonight we will release four Japanese lanterns and watch them soar towards the heavens, to our Peanut.

Happy birthday, my loving, introspective, cautious, funny, intellectual, musical little Peanut.  Oh, how I wish you were here.  I hope you are having a party in heaven, filled with balloons, ice cream, salsa and chips, Backyardigans, music from The Zac Brown Band, and stories from Eric Carle and Dr. Seuss.  Momma will contribute by reading you to sleep with "Guess How Much I Love You."  But, you already know the answer to that question.  To the moon - and back!

One gaze says it all - love.

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