Wednesday, July 25, 2012

She's brought us more joy {and cupcakes too!}

My Bella. We call her Bella, but she was born, Isabella...10 years ago today. Oh how the years go by so quickly it seems! The days can feel long at times, but the years are swift and leave it to another birthday to remind me of that. So my sweet Bella is having a birthday today. She is out with Chip and all the kids for lunch- except for Teague, who is napping and which is why I am enjoying a quiet moment to blog. And to reflect.
I wrote an update on FaceBook today about how she was born early in the morning and under scary circumstances. For whatever reason, and we'll never know for sure, her heart rate stopped when I was at the hospital, in labor (at 8cm) and suddenly everything in the room went for normal, calm breathing to high alert/panic mode. I'll never forget the look on Chip's face. I'll never forget the stern, firm words from my doctor as they suddenly prepared to deliver her. The doctor told me, "Normally I wouldn't ask you to do this, but you have to just do what I're going to push and have this baby in the next contraction. There's no other way." That was the moment Chip panicked and as the room sort of swirled and buzzed around me I remember that I pushed with all my might and much to all of our surprise and I am sure a helping nudge from above, Bella was born.
She was tiny. Not my tiniest, but at 5lbs. 10. oz. and 18 inches long, she was small. And after a moment or two of oxygen and rubbing from the nurses, she was healthy and doing just fine. That all happened on July 25, 2002. Four days shy of the first annivesary of our incident in which Teagan was taken from us so suddenly. It was almost surreal to me at that time, and it still i now when I pause to think about it all, that in the time span of one year we lost one daughter, had a brush with death with another and yet held her in our arms amazed at the new life God had given to Chip and me again. I remember feeling so overwhelmed. Not as I had been with becoming a mom all over again with my other kids, but with the knowledge that all my kids were gifts from God no matter how long they would be in my arms here on earth. I was overwhelmed with the way God was showing Himself to be real in our lives- in spite of our tragedy and broken hearts. He knew before Chip and I did, that the very thing we needed in life was someone so small and perfect to be a stunning visual, baby soft reminder of God's mercy, tenderness, might and sovereignty in our lives.
Isabella was all of that, and so much more. I have loved her and wept over her with tears of joy and the belief in my heart once again that I could absolutely trust in God's ways and in His timing. She was a gift to our lives and hearts when we would have closed ourselves off to goodness in this world simply because we were hurt so deeply. But God reached down into the depths of our hurt and sent Bella to us at such a perfect time. We couldn't have planned it any more perfectly than it happened.
She is 10 years old today. In those ten years we have watched her grow and change and continue to become more of the person God made her to be. She is sensitive. And feisty too. She loves Pokemon and computers and she is amazing at art and writing and she is quick-witted too. She would stay up reading late into the night every night if I let her. She would still probably be the first or second one awake. =) She is Crew's best buddy these days, but also connects with Ava as one would expect sisters so close inage to do. If I told her she could never go outside again, she would probably clap her hands and shout, 'hooray!'. She sys, "I am more of an inside kind of girl." I love that she knows what she likes and what she doesn't. But she sometimes surprises me at what she will venture to try too.
One night a little while back as I was tucking her into bed for the night she had sort of a downcast look about her. I sat on the edge of her bed and asked, "Bella, is everything okay? You look kind of sad". Her response blew me away...and yet totally affirmed what I already know to be true about her. She said, "Mom, I feel sad you know why?" I asked, "No...why?" She replied, "I can't stop thinking about some kids in the world. There are kids in the world who don't have a mom or dad or someone else to love them. I feel sad when I think about kids who don't get a hug or kiss goodnight." And then she told me this, "When I grow up I want to travel around the world meeting kids who don't get love and giving them hugs and kisses."
If every heart were as sensitive and empathetic as hers, this world would be so full of extra hugs and kisses that I think we would overflow with love. I actually hope that she does grow up and find herself able to tend to people who need love and give some of hers away. She is good at showing her love and to know that her love could change the life of another person is an amazing thing to me. Her love already changed me. So I have no doubt that God is working in her and will do what He wants to do through her.
I was flipping through my scrap albums with Teague yesterday afternoon. He was surprisingly gentle and really interested in the pages in my books. I was surprised by that! One of the first pages we turned to was the one I posted here about Bella. She was 5 at the time. I love that I captured that conversation and moment in her life. I love that not much has changed. =)


Cheryl said...

What a wonderful post. After having lost a child myself and then delivering another one a little over a year later, I can relate to the feelings that you have experienced. I could have never been so articulate though in writing them down. I had tears in my eyes.

I don't see any resemblance at all between you and your daughter! lol

She sounds like a beautiful 10 year old...inside and out. Blessings to you and yours and a big Happy Birthday to your Bella!

With love and Hope,

My name is Amee said...

Happy Birthday Bella!!! I hope you've had a wonderful happy Birthday. :)
Boy, do you two favor!! :)

cat said...

Happy Birthday Bella!

Anonymous said...

wonderful touching post!

Emily Pitts said...

she is a gem.