On Your First Birthday

Posted 26 April, 2012 by Trish in Life / 53 Comments


To my sweet little Elizabeth Claire on her first birthday,

Your daddy has been giving me such a difficult time the past few weeks because my heart has been so heavy over your turning one. In some ways it feels as though the past year has just flown by but in other ways it’s hard to remember life before you were born. It could have been lifetimes ago that we went to bed the night before you were born, the night of Easter, with such giddy excitement in anticipation of leaving for the hospital before dawn the next day. Or the next morning looking in the mirror one last time at my giant tummy that had housed you for nearly ten months and knowing that in a matter of hours I’d be holding you in my arms.

The hours on your birth day seemed to move so slowly and your daddy and I were so eager to meet you. But as slowly as those minutes ticked by, as soon as you were ready, you were ready and we met you with excitement and tears of joy. I cannot describe how incredible the feelings and emotions were as I went from holding you within me to holding you within my arms and see your those little arms and feet that prodded me and your sweet little face and rosebud mouth and of course that head full of hair.

It’s hard now to imagine you as small as you were then. Daddy always tells me that you’re a lot bigger than when you made your intial arrival and my goodness how you’ve grown. It seems incredible that when I bathed you, I could wash you entirely in my bathroom sink–the little turkey that you were. And when we went for daily walks you laid perfectly within the body of the stroller and now you love to dangle your legs along the foot rest. You absolutely adored your playmat and would squeal with delight but now you are more interested in opening up the kitchen cabinets and finding what you can bang around. I’m not sure that we’ll experience another year that contains such drastic and wondrous changes.

It hasn’t been the easiest year transitioning from a woman and wife to the new role of mother, but it has been one of the most joyous years of my life. I’ve cried tears of frustration and sorrow and fear but also tears of the deepest love. But mostly I feel my love for you in my heart–there are some moments when my heart feels so full for you that I simply don’t know if I can bare it. I just look at you, and your amazing beauty, and your strong and willful spirit, and am filled with completeness. People told me that I wouldn’t know a mother’s love until I was a mother myself and now I am telling you that I simply cannot define the precious love that I feel for you. It is miraculous.

We waited a long time for you to join our lives and I am so blessed to have you as my daughter. While I know that it drives you crazy when I hold you like a baby, my favorite time of day is when you’re in your little jammies and we are snuggled together in the rocking chair. I love that time when I can sing to you and look into your beautiful blue eyes and hold your little hand and just rock and rock and rock while I hold you close. It has been an amazing year and my heart is heavy at it being over so quickly never to have those moments back, but I look forward to all of the wonderful times ahead.

I love you my sweet little Chickpea Banana. You are my sunshine.



My oh my oh my…  I do have a twelve month update post drafted but haven’t had a chance to go through last month’s photos to upload. Just like yesterday was Elle’s true birthday. A day in the life, right?

Thank you for letting me share this past year with you all.

53 Responses to “On Your First Birthday”

  1. Les

    I’m wiping away the tears, Trish. You have written the most beautiful love letter to your precious little babe, one with which she will cherish for her entire life. As I read your words, I found myself remembering the birth of my sweet daughter and many of your thoughts and emotions echo mine. Motherhood is the most rewarding job I have ever had and while it’s been over 28 years since I became a mother, I still remember so much of that amazing first year. You will have so many great moments in this coming year and I look forward to watching your Chickpea continue to grow and bring joy to your world. Happy Birthday, sweet Elle!

  2. This was absolutely the very best present you ever could have given Elle! I feel a little voyeuristic even reading it, and yet I’m glad you posted it because it’s just so beautiful and full of love. *hugs to Elle and her lovely Mama*

  3. Kay

    OK, Trish, just see how you made all of us other mothers (and see how long we’ve been mothers?) cry. Me too! Such a precious, precious letter to your little Elle. I’ve totally enjoyed this first year of her life and how you let all of us participate with your emotions and her development. Thank you!

    You have so much joy to come though. So many things. A daughter is a gift (as is a son, but I don’t have one of those) and wowie zowie have you got fun times to come. Said a little bit tongue in cheek and with complete sincerity. Hugs to you, little mother. Ya done good!

  4. Trish — what a beautiful heart you have, and what a beautiful mother you are. Elle is so blessed to have you, and yes… you are very blessed to have her. Your words are so touching and deep… it’s easy to feel your heart. See? NOW…. you know how much I love YOU. — mom

  5. What a lovely post! Happy birthday to that beautiful daughter, and I know the next year will hold SO many more amazing changes and memories :)

  6. You made me cry! Oh Trish! I am joking up here. What a beautiful and honest post. Happy birthday to a gorgeous little girl, who has a wonderful mum. xx

  7. Congratulations on Elle’s first Bday.Wish her good health and happiness forever. Beautiful post :)Hope you guys had a great time celebrating her first bday. Waiting to see the photos :)

  8. that was so beautiful. tears in my eyes. my baby turns one next month and wow, how quickly it has gone! best wishes for elle! the year to come will be full of wonders too (just wait until she starts talking!)

    • Yep – agreed. I have goosebumps. Beautiful, Trish. I can’t imagine the emotions that must go through you when your baby girl turns one. I love the monthly photos. I know you’ll always treasure those. Happy birthday, baby girl!

  9. So beautiful Trish. Turning one is bittersweet for sure. You are a wonderful mother, it shows. Happy birthday Chickpea! I can’t wait to meet her someday.

  10. What a beautiful post – definitely a tear-jerker! And how funny that I forgot she had a name other than Chickpea Banana! I wonder what she will be called when she grows up?!!!

  11. Happy Birthday Chickpea!!! You are on your way to growing up as beautiful and sweet like your mamma. Enjoy this wonderful birthday week ♥

    Thanks for making me cry Trish, sniff, sniff.
    (now the peeps at work think I have completely lost it today,prob a good thing)

  12. Congrats to you and the hubs on Elle’s birthday. People like to joke about “surviving” that first year, as though there were nuclear fallout to contend with. And though some diapers might come close, I believe that first year is more growth than survival. We can see Elle’s physical growth in the pictures, but it is your growth that might be more substantial. So, congratulations and blessings upon your next 12 months!

  13. awwwwwwww….now I’ve got heavy boots too :) But in a good way. Congratulations on a year of such beauty, and thank you for sharing it with us all so we can all watch her grow up too! I love you and Elle so much and wish I could be there every day to squeeze her :) Lovelovelove.

  14. Happy, happy birthday, Elle! And a beautiful letter from you, Trish. Hoping the coming year is just as full of love and happiness and awesome, awesome changes.

  15. Such a beautiful post. Thank you for sharing it with us. Motherhood is like nothing I’ve ever experienced before and I wouldn’t trade it for anything. Here’s to another great year!

  16. Elle has been a wonderful blessing in our lives. Thank you for sharing your thoughts, and thanks to you and Scott for being such loving parents.

  17. A year? Wow! It’s been a joy to see Elle grow up virtually, and I have so appreciated your honesty about so many aspects of transitioning to motherhood. The journey is a few years away for me, but I’ve learned so much from you. Plus, Elle is so utterly adorable, I love to see pictures of her!

  18. Dear Trish, that is the most beautiful letter that I have ever read. You have such a great gift of putting words together. Elle is so lucky to have wonderful parents. I am so blessed to know you and your family, and to have given the chance to meet Elle last spring. Please keep updating your blog, I really enjoy reading everything you have to stay!

    Your Canadian Friend,
    Pete :)

  19. Dear Trish,
    You have written such a beautiful letter about your daughter. Elle is so lucky to have such wonderful parents. I enjoy reading your blog and admire your passion for reading and writing. I know that one day when Elle is older she will see your blog and all the amazing postings that you have written about her. Please continue updating your blog as I truly enjoy following your families important millstones. I hope we see each other someday soon!

    Your Friend, Peter

  20. Happy birthday, Chickpea Banana! Don’t you sometimes wonder who has changed more in the past year, you or her?!

  21. Happy birthday, little Elle! We are all having so much fun watching you grow up and watching your mom in her journey through motherhood. :)

  22. How beautiful–the letter and your family. I wish I had the forethought to write something like that for my children. She will treasure it.

    It’s tough to see the first year go by, but there are so many fun things in her future. It will be amazing to see her walk (if she isn’t already), run, jump (so funny when they can’t get their feet off the ground), talk, count, read, etc. It’s true that the most changes are in the first year. While the milestones get more stretched out as time goes on, they’ll still be just as amazing. I hope the chickpea banana had a fantastic birthday!

  23. Thank you all for your very sweet comments and emails and notes on facebook. It has truly been a pleasure sharing this first year with you all and I can’t thank you enough for being there on the journey with me. xoxo

  24. This is a beautiful post, beautiful baby! It’s amazing to look at her monthly photos, you can see her grow sometimes from one month to another. brilliant idea.

  25. OMG Trish you have me in freaking TEARS here!!!! Such a sweet sweet post!! And so beautiful :’) That baby of yours is such a beauty. Your whole family is just so beautiful :) Happy birthday to her and congrats to you and the hubby on your first very succesful year as parents!!

  26. Awww..I can’t believe that she is already one! My how the time flies! I love how you can see how much she has grown throughout those pictures. You are going to treasure these posts when she is older. I just know it. Happy Birthday to her!

  27. Oh, wow, that is such a beautiful letter to your daughter, Trish! I’m sure she will love it and sniffle like the rest of us, someday. The photos really show how much she’s grown. I wish I’d thought to label photos of my boys, that way. Happy Belated Birthday to Chickpea Banana!

  28. Happy late Birthday Elle! I can’t believe a year has already gone by but those pictures portray it perfectly. She’s such a beautiful little one Trish and while you’re very lucky to have her she’s really lucky to have you too. You are a great mom and this is a beautiful tribute that made me cry. These are the kinds of things that will mean so much to her when she’s older. Give her a big squeeze from me.

  29. Such a b’ful post! You are a terrific mom who has the most b’ful daughter :) The year has flown by really :)