Tuesday, May 17, 2005


On Monday our angel turned one! I can't believe how fast this year has gone! She had a big party on Sunday and had fun eating cake and making a mess! :)

Today was her one year check up... with my other babies that meant we would go to the doctor, talk about everything they were doing, get their shots and go home. So easy. Kennedy has to make everything complicated though! :) After filling a med student in on all her medical history (that was fun! LOL) she had to go get blood drawn out of both arms (they couldn't get a vein the first time) and then get her shots... but it doesn't end there... we now have referrals for ENT, ophthalmology, and cardiology, you'd think she were WAY older than one!

She weighed in at 11 lbs 11 oz today... that's only a 4 ounce gain from last week... but last time she gained 13 oz in 6 days! It seems she's doing this whole growing thing in spurts! She is drinking pediasure now mixed with a high calorie powder and lately her diet has included lots of birthday cake! I'm sure next week her weight will be up! (Unfortunately, so will mine!)

We go back to Vanderbilt on June 4th or something like that, so if you don't hear from me before, I will update then!

Here is the birthday letter I wrote for Kennedy on Monday:

Every year on my children’s birthdays I write a letter. I reflect on our year together and ways they have grown. I write about things they have taught me. Here I sit on Kennedy’s first birthday and I have started her letter over 3 times. Words do not seem to express the feelings in my heart. The list of things that Kennedy has taught me this past year would fill 10 pages. So what can I share with you about Kennedy?

Most of you reading this have been part of our lives this past year in one way or another. You have prayed for us. You have been here to cry with us when things were bad and to offer help in any way possible. You have been here to celebrate Kennedy’s accomplishments and rejoice over successful surgeries. You have sent letters, emails, cards, and gifts and for those I am truly thankful. This year has been… amazing.

Kennedy woke up a little after 1 this morning, so I was able to tell her happy birthday on her first birthday second, 1:28am. She looked at me with heavy eyes and a little grin and drifted quickly back to sleep. No doubt she was dreaming of cake with lots of frosting. As I sat there and held her I thought about how much has changed this last year. I thought about how scared I was the day she was born, I didn’t know if I could give this baby the things she needed. I thought about the way my heart shattered the first time I heard the words “Down syndrome”. Fear of the unknown is worse than anything. I thought about all the people we have met because of her. We have made life-long friends in the midst of storms. I thought about how far she has come, inside and out.

I thought about how much I love this child, this perfect little girl. She has made me a better mom, a better friend, a better person. In many ways I can’t believe she’s a year old already, but in other ways I can’t remember my life without her. It seems like she has always been here, stealing the hearts of everyone she encounters. Her smile can light up the skies; her touch can warm the coldest day. A hug from Kennedy is like a hug from God. She is… amazing.

When Kennedy was born one year ago our family was thrown into a state of uncertainty. She has opened doors to a world of doctors and therapists, hospitals and medical books. She has also shown us how to love unconditionally, to see the good in all people, and to see the work of God in a whole new light. She is our angel here to show us the world as it’s meant to be seen. I can’t wait to see what this year will bring. I can’t wait to see how she will change, and how she will change us. I can’t wait to tell you all about it. Happy Birthday my angel, we love you more than words can say.