Sometimes on this blog I share the letters I write and send to the email account I started for Daisy. I often write her emails when there are big things I want her to know even though she's too young to understand. This is what I wrote this morning, just 24 hours from welcoming Ella. My hormones have turned me into an unstoppable fountain of tears (both happy and sad) so bear with me.
My sweet Daisy,
I am awash with emotion today preparing for the arrival of your baby sister, Ella Rose, tomorrow. I always dreamed of having three or four children and loved the thought of a big family but I never anticipated how tightly I would hold onto the dynamic with my firstborn. I am so excited to meet Ella but I am so sad to say goodbye to this chapter of motherhood. I cried last night as we read our story together, me, you and Dad, knowing it was the second-to-last story time with just the three of us.
You have played such an incredibly important role in my life. You came into this world fighting and showed me how strong the two of us are. You stretched my heart to be bigger than I ever thought possible and continue to make it swell on a daily basis with the brilliant, earnest things you say. You gave me the job title I always wanted more than anything: "mother".
You have challenged me to be selfless, to prioritize and to learn how to work more efficiently. You have made me feel more loved and needed than I have ever felt in my life and this fills me with confidence and gratitude. Because of you I have experienced joy in its richest and purest form. I am a better person because of you.
I want you to know that I will always love you this much – and more tomorrow than yesterday – no matter how many siblings we add to our family. Your mark on my heart is indelible and my commitment to mothering you to the best of my ability will never diminish.
As I’ve prepared for my time in the hospital welcoming Ella, my number one priority has been how and when I will see you each day. You are still the center of my universe and the first thing on my mind when I open my eyes in the morning or make a plan for the future.
I’ve done my very best to shower you with love and attention over these last few weeks. We took long walks for ice cream and colored for hours and watched fireflies dance in the yard and held each other and exchanged so many kisses I thought our cheeks would fall off. I let you eat pizza for breakfast and wear a princess crown and read extra books at bedtime. I’ve spent hours telling you how smart and kind and creative you have become. I want you to always feel as loved as you are.
I know you will be an amazing big sister. It was my second favorite role in life outside of motherhood. I just know you will find the same joy in watching Ella grow as I did with Freddy. You’ll show her how to ride a bike and climb a tree and do a canon ball. You’ll build forts on rainy days and fairy houses in the yard and trade stories late into the night. I hope you will protect her from bullies and encourage her to try new things and celebrate her achievements.
I see the incredible empathy you have for others (every time you see someone wearing a Band-Aid you are horrified and need to immediately know what happened and if they’re okay then you give them a hundred kisses) – and I know this empathy will translate beautifully to sisterhood.
The next few weeks and months will be an adjustment for all of us but I know in due time we will settle into a new dynamic that is even more wonderful than the one we have now. And I promise to make you feel as loved as ever.
Thank you for teaching me to be a mother. With all my love, always.