Dear Olivia, Today you are 18 months old.
It is hard to fathom as it feels like it was yesterday that I found out that I was carrying you. It seemed unbelievable because a week prior, I was sick but the test showed that I wasn’t pregnant. Yet here I was, sitting staring at a pregnancy test that showed that I was indeed pregnant.
It wasn’t hard to tell that I was carrying a girl. And you are a promise from our heavenly Father. I remember Mike coming home from church when I was pregnant with Charlie saying that he felt very strongly that day to pray for our daughter even though we would find out weeks later that I was carrying a boy.
After the miscarriage, you were and continue to be a reminder of God’s most gracious gift. And that is why your middle name is Rose.
Even the wilderness and desert will be glad in those days. The wasteland will rejoice and blossom like a rose.
You remind us daily that God is faithful, and that He will carry us through the uncertain times. I remember being at the doctor’s office that was located in the hospital when I saw the numbers on the screen. I knew the numbers were bad, but God kept telling me that no matter what I would be okay. And then going to labor and delivery to make sure I wasn’t having contractions and at risk of delivering you very early.
She will be safe, in the Father’s hands, and yours.
Even so, God allowed me to carry you for 39 weeks and 6 days. Since giving birth I have learned to carry you in other ways. One being in holding your hand. And truly you like to hold my hand. You held it when I would nurse you, when we watch Frozen, and you hold on so tightly as we now walk. From day one, your smile has been infectious and so many people stop us when we are out to comment on how beautiful you are.
I hope that this is a reflection of how you will walk with your heavenly Father one day. Holding on tightly, loving to dance, and smiling because you know He delights in you even more than we do. I can only hope that we reflect His love in raising you so you grow up knowing that you are a beloved daughter of a King.
You love sitting in your dad’s lap. Yesterday when we were encouraging you to walk, you just went and rested with him. You remind us that we should always be returning and resting with our God.
His arms provide the strength we need when it is hard to walk on our own.
At 18 months, we take joy in watching you experience new things, like when you sing along with “No Longer Slaves”. As the song says, you are a child of God. And as I was listening to the song with you yesterday and hearing you try to pronounce “God” at the exact right time, I was reminded that I am too a child of God. Born of His spirit. Chosen and adopted because of Jesus.
Little one, you are 18 months, small but mighty. That is evident when you passed the stomach bug onto almost an entire family this winter. Yet, your sweetest and peace is just as infectious as your smile. I know that as the months and years pass, that people will come to know a loving Father because you are a loved daughter of a God who delights in you.