A Letter to Our Youngest Daughter on Your 1st Birthday


You were born on one of the snowiest days I can remember Lubbock having. Your mom had been having contractions for a while, and we just couldn’t figure out if it was time. Finally, all of the pieces sort of came together. The midwife and her apprentice were in town. They would check on your mom, then go back to the hotel to wait for the call. It was nice to have that space. But as the weather got worse, I started to worry if they’d make it back the next time. So I called her right after they’d left and said, just stay, it’s time.

Your Grandma Liz was visiting. She and your sister had gone to bed, but it was still early so they were probably reading. The house was nice and warm and the snow had been getting worse as it got later and later. Your mom did such an amazing job. Every now and then Dawn, the midwife, would help her focus or help her if she needed something. But like with your sister, she just sort of did it on her own. So strong and brave.
I caught you and I was the first person to hold you when you were born. You were so tiny. Right when you started crying your grandma brought your sister in. Amelia was so happy to see you.

And now you’re a year old. You’re walking, talking, and feeding yourself. Your favorite song is Itsy Bitsy Spider. You don’t get all the motions. You can do the spider going up the water spout, but your favorite part is the water washing the spider out. You sort of shake your whole body when we get there. You’re so happy to see me when I get home from work–it’s the best part of my day! You say hi to strangers, hug stuffed animals and dolls when they’re given to you, and you give these really slobbery open mouth kisses on the cheek. My favorite thing is when you give hugs. You turn your head, rest it on my shoulder, wrap a chubby arm around my neck and sort of squeeze with your whole body. It’s unbelievably sweet.

You like to pick up books, open the front cover, and put your whole face in it. Sometimes you’ll talk when you do it. I’m hoping this means your sister’s love of books is rubbing off on you.

You’ve also started picking up our phones and scrolling with your little fingers on the screen. Other times you’ll pick it up and say, “hi,” and try FaceTiming with the blank screen. It’s adorable, Violet, but it just means I should spend less time on my phone when I’m with you. I promise to work on that.

You did great camping and when you flew with your mom and your sister. We haven’t found any foods you don’t like…yet. Raspberries are a favorite. You want to do everything your sister is doing and you seem pretty adventurous. The funniest thing you like doing is going down slides backward. You climb the slide, then sit down, lean forward, and ride butt first down. It’s the funniest and most terrifying thing to watch. You’re just a sweet kid. I’m excited that we get to know you.

Happy birthday, Violet.