It hardly seems like a year since last Easter, when I was about 7 months pregnant with Lu. I remember trying to picture what her first Easter would be like. Since we didn't know the sex of our baby then, I had two pictures in my head: one of my husband and I laughing as we watched our little, dark haired, son crawling around trying to destroy everything in sight and the other of a little girl, also with dark hair, wearing a pastel yellow dress playing with a stuffed bunny. As it turned out, Lu's first Easter was a combination of both visions with some unexpected happenings as well.
My family gathered at my husband's parent's house, as we do for every holiday, and we did all the traditional Easter activities. Interestingly enough, my husband and I smiled as we watched our bald little girl crawling around, in a floral dress, trying to destroy everything in sight. She did play with a stuffed bunny, at least... right before she chewed on its face. She walked around the yard, with the help of her two cousins, and searched for little white Easter eggs with red hearts on them, tore through her 3 Easter baskets, and ate a huge tray full of food. She had a blast and enjoyed playing all day.
Earlier that week, we got photos of her with the Easter Bunny. In true Lu fashion, she sat on his white furry lap with confidence, and tried to grab his nose. Nothing phases that kid.
Time certainly does fly. When Lu was a few months old, I couldn't even imagine her crawling and talking. Now I can barely remember what is was like to be able to hold her on my chest, while she slept, without her fighting me. She is so feisty and strong now, which is also something I couldn't picture when she was younger. During the months leading up to her surgery, she always seemed so fragile and vulnerable. I couldn't wait for the days when she was healthy and independent like she is now. I am so proud of her strength and grateful for her health and I love to see her growing into an independent little girl. Knowing all the struggles we had when she was an infant doesn't prevent me from missing my little baby but I definitely prefer chasing her around the house over forcing medicine down her throat every 2-3 hours and measuring everything she ate. We are living everything we wished for, right now. It is truly a dream come true.
I may not have pictured having a baby with a serious heart condition, but I am glad for every moment of everything in her 10 months of life, so far. Our experience has made us who we are today and will continue to shape us in the future. Everything Lu went through in her first 6 months of life definitely contributed to the admirable character she is today. I never thought I could admire someone so young but half the reason I look up to her so much is because she is so young. She has confidence, a love for life, and a curiosity so innocent and genuine. She is not even close to the child I imagined when I was pregnant. She is way more, mended heart and all.