First of all, I can’t even put into words, but I was overwhelmed – still am – by the response of my last blog post. I just want to say thank you for everyone that shared your stories, your encouraging words… you helped me… more than you know.
From the moment she was born my dad has called Evelyn “Sunshine”. And ever since her personality has started to bloom, that names fits her so well. When I started thinking up “themes” for her first birthday I knew I didn’t want a princess theme until she was big enough to enjoy it, and nothing else came to mind except a rainbow/ sunshine theme. It was perfect!!:)
I took rainbow-colored streamers and strung them around my parents’ home, where the party was held. Where the streamers ended, me and my little brother blew up white balloons of all sizes and wrapped white tulle between the balloons to make clouds from them. But the best part, aside from you know, the birthday girl was the cake. This cake was the cake of all cakes. Seriously. It kind of hurt my heart to have to cut it up! It had glitter, ya’ll.
At the last minute my dad ran around the corner and got a pinata for the kids. He said every party needs one of these. After seeing the kids have such a good time, I think I agree.
I thought I would be a real mess, but like everything Evelyn Jane, her turning one has all been kind of surreal. I held back bitter tears on the way to my mom’s that morning to decorate. I wanted this day to be about her. Not about what I didn’t get. Over time I’ve had to train my mind to stop those thoughts dead in their tracks. Grief is grief is grief. And things will always have a way of circling back to Jenna, especially with the milestones we get to celebrate with Evelyn but I don’t want my love for Jenna to steal my joy today… I want my love for Jenna to be something that makes me a better person, a better mom, a better wife today. I want her life to be honored. For so long, I allowed grief to steal happiness, smiles, joy and gifts around me, and I think that is the nature of the beast. Grief steals, and if you let it, it will only continue to swallow up more parts of your life. On Saturday, I let myself be happy beyond tears and words. I let myself be all there. Seeing her sit in front of her massive rainbow cake brought me to tears. Happy tears, honestly sad tears, but mostly thankful tears.
I still can’t believe she’s ours some days.
ps- I took these photos on manual mode!! I’m getting brave ya’ll! I’m also signing up for Beryl’s Momtographie course, which I know will help me make that transition from “auto” to “manual” so. much. easier.