I'm still in disbelief that this happened, my rainbow baby turned one. It feels like we just came home from the hospital, that her sisters just got a chance to meet her. But on the other hand it feels like a lifetime ago. Like we have had her here for years, so much so that I can't really remember life without her.
I mean I know time is a thief, the twins turned 10 over night it seems, but this time it feels harder. Maybe it's because we fought so hard for her, because we had so many years of pain and longing for her. Maybe it's because I've learned to be more present, more aware. Or maybe it's because I know that she will also be 10 tomorrow, maybe that's what I am most fearful of.
So how do I control time? How do I stop it from taking away my moments so quickly? I wish I had the answer. All I know is that it's not fair. We work so so hard for our babies and then we are forced to help them grow, to make sure they know how to do things on their own, to teach them how to need us less and less every day. This makes no sense, but here we are.
So we went all out. Let me preface this by saying that however you choose to celebrate your babies is beautiful, whatever fills your heart up and theirs is perfect. We had a small celebration on her actual birthday, November 4th, at home, with some home made "donuts" and a candle. We sang, she opened a few gifts and we showered her with balloons (that are still sitting on my dining room floor). It was perfect and honestly it would have been enough.
But look, I'm really big on birthdays, always have been. And I absolutely know that she won't remember this, but I will, we will. I also know that anything can change in a matter of hours (as the pandemic showed us), and I didn't want to miss an opportunity to gather with our favorite people. So, we did just that. We had the most amazing day celebrating her, talking about her, loving on her and that's what we will be telling her about when she's older. That so many of our family and friends stopped what they were doing that day to celebrate her for a couple hours. And that meant the whole world to us.
On November 13th 2021 we celebrated Eriela's 1st trip around the sun. Her G-d father Christian hosted her party.
His back yard was perfect, and since ours is still under construction, it was the perfect spot. We hired a party planner so that I could stress a little less. And since we had my grandparents' memorial the weekend before in Oklahoma, this allowed a lot of the stress to come off my shoulders.
I knew this was the theme for this year. It was so fitting. And frankly I think we nailed it. Every single detail that this event entailed was spectacular and far exceeded my expectation. It made me remember all the long months without her but also caused me to take deep breaths of relief as I kept thinking about where we are today.
Our food included individual pre plated salads, pasta salads, fruit cups, veggies cups and mini caprese and turkey and cheese sandwiches as well as some pb&j for the kids (and myself). We had some wine and beer and some seltzer drinks for the adults, juice boxes for the kiddos.
Eriela's cake was a gift from her gd father, Christian. You guys, it was AMAZING. Seriously the prettiest cake I've ever seen. And it was delicious too! Carrot, my favorite. He also had beautiful sun and rainbow cookies spread out that matched the cake. It was a dream dessert table truthfully.
Another sweet surprise was her smash cake. Our incredible friends Millie and her baby girl June Brooks sent over her smash cake. I was so touched by this detail and felt her presence there. Oh and it was so good too, Eriela didn't quite know what to do with the cake when it came time to sing to her, so I may or may not have had my fork in that most of the afternoon.
We had a bounce house which the older kids loved and a ball pit and other climbing toys for the little ones. Eriela was obsessed with the ball pit! It was so sweet to see all fo the kids play together, and also see the older ones dive in and entertain the little ones.
I am so grateful for all of our friends and family that came. I don't think a lot of them realize how much it meant to me. After years of having a hard time celebrating, an anxiety driven pregnancy and then a pandemic, well this just felt magical.
Eriela Nicole you are so loved. I cannot wait to tell you all about how we celebrated you today, how you were our missing puzzle piece and how much sunshine you have brought to our rainy days.
Huge thank you to @luxeandco for the perfect event and @rmayersphotos for capturing it all