When I sat down to write your 13 month post I never thought--not for a second--that we'd be a legal family by the time I wrote the next one. But God is the inventor of surprises. Two days ago you toddled your way to 14 months. Nine days ago we watched as a judge signed on the dotted line. Official.
It's hard to think back over the past 14 months and see through the blinding brightness of our future. I remember watching your birth, before everything else happened, and simply loving you, without the dread of losing you. I remember watching you turn into a one-month-old while trying to hold my head above water and be your mommy all at the same time. I remember somehow falling into a routine where the looming trial in April wasn't always the very first thing on my mind in the morning and the very last thing on my mind at night. And suddenly you were six months old and then eight and then nine. We made it to Christmas and then your birthday. Always, always, there seemed to be slightly less oxygen than I needed to adequately breathe. Somehow, I just kept inhaling...and then exhaling.
In and out. In and out. Until your father made the decision two and a half weeks ago and I simply held my breath for two days straight. On Wednesday you had a visit with your father and though he couldn't sign until the next day, he told me that he was so glad it was over. The feeling was mutual. The next day your mother cried. I cried. Your father told us to stop crying so that he wouldn't start. Your daddy had tears in his eyes. You're a lucky baby to be loved so fiercely by so many.
You're walking and babbling and teething and dancing and flirting and smiling and squirming and doing all the things you should be doing. And I'm thinking ahead...for the first time in a long time.
I love you.