January 12, 2017.
One day that changed all my days. I became a mom. I became a mom to the most beautiful and darling little thing my eyes had ever seen. She came into this world and we both started her journey by crying and holding on to each other. She was looking to be comforted, but she had no idea just how much comfort she was bringing me and has continued to over the last year. The past 365 days have been the most treasured of my life and celebrating her BIG today was no question.
The gifts were bought and party planned. I crafted all week with decorations, a friend was making the sweetest cake, and I had balloons ready for the minute she woke up this morning. We were going to spend the day doing all of her favorite things as a family of three and then do it up big with family and friends this weekend. But then she woke up yesterday with the worst cough and cry and when I placed her on my chest like I did one year ago she again was looking to be comforted, but this time I could feel how hot her skin was against mine.
I spent her birthday eve checking her temperature constantly and trying anything in my power to relieve her obvious discomfort. We were able to get her in to the last appointment of the day and her pediatrician walked in with the most sad eyes as she said, “She tested positive for the flu.” She spent the car ride home reading her favorite book and just happy to be out of the doctor. Meanwhile, I sobbed to my husband about how unfair it was for something so tiny and precious to be so sick and helpless and on her birthday no less.
I spent the evening making my child scream as medicine was forced down her throat and as I tried to clear out her nose so she could breathe better. I put her to bed with tears from both of us as we again just wanted to be comforted.
But as I went back in to console her later that night, holding her against me just minutes away from midnight, I couldn’t help but thank God for her little life on her littlest birthday. Let’s be honest, today was for me. She doesn’t know it’s her birthday and we can do it all again later and she won’t know the difference and will be thrilled all the same.
So I cried (again), but this time they were tears of thanks for her health the first 364 days and for her health that will return in just a couple days. I cried thanking Him for gifting us with her first birthday when so many parents cry over loss on birthdays or sit at bedsides and in hospitals praying for miracles. I cried thanking Him with the opportunity to spend her first birthday the same way we spent her birthing day, holding each other (and me worrying about her getting what she needs then and now).
Today we celebrate in our pajamas, with snot covering both of us, her little life and all God has done and will continue to do. Today we celebrate her name, Anniston, from the Greek word ‘Anastasis’ meaning RESURRECTION. We praise God for His power that raised Christ from the grace, that lives in us. We praise Him for her 365 days of life that have resurrected joy in our hearts. The last 365 days I have prayed over her every night with one prayer always being the same, may the people know that her joy is not of this world and may they come to know God the Father because of that joy.
And even with a fever, chills, and aches all over, we have STILL seen that joy and know that is only from above. Thank you God for my baby girl, for a year together, and for another day together.
Today we celebrate YOU, Anniston Kate Fidell! You are loved my girl! Happy FIRST Birthday!