Monday, February 20, 2012

The Babies Are Gone

When did our babies go from this...

Kaitlyn-3 1/2 yrs old, Preston-1 1/2 yrs old this?

Kaitlyn-8 yrs old, Preston 5 1/2 yrs old

Our firstborn, Kaitlyn Lee, was born just after her dad's birthday and just before our anniversary/Christmas. She was a miracle baby, a planned pregnancy, but still surprising since I had previous uterine complications. She was born at a petite 7 lbs and 18 inches and immediately captured our hearts.

Kaitlyn-2 mos. old (dress made by my mom to match my dress at that age)

Our second child, Preston Craig, was born fittingly on Father's Day. What better present could a dad receive than a son? He, too, was a planned pregnancy, but still another miracle. He was born at nearly a whopping 9 lbs and 19 1/2 inches long. Once again, our hearts were captured by another tiny, frail human being.

Preston-2 mos. old

Recently, Craig and I have realized that our kids are growing up. It seems like we just blinked once since they were babies and now they are our mini-me's. We've dealt with struggles like homework, bullies, and staying positive. We've comforted, cuddled, and wiped tears when certain situations were just too tough for their little hearts. We've also laughed, encouraged, and enjoyed the many triumphs we celebrated along the way.

Being siblings, Kaitlyn and Preston have their share of squabbles. Some days they can't even look at each other without the other one getting upset. However, they know we are a family. They love when we are all together and know there are no more siblings in the future (I had a hysterectomy in 2009). I love the times when I catch those sweet moments and they don't realize I'm watching.

Preston has come a long way since the beginning of the school year. It was very, very rough for him and caused anxiety for him and me. However, he remained brave, just as we told him to be, and we prayed many prayers for God to give him courage. He continues to flourish in school. He loves that he can read now and excels in math. Preston continues to add to his collection of cars and we can always find them in some type of formation around the house or his room. He is an incredibly affectionate Mama's Boy, always showering me with kisses, hugs, and nose rubs (Eskimo kisses). But, he won't let me do that in front of his friends. He has to give fist bumps instead.

Kaitlyn. Our little girl is gone and she has become so independent at such a young age. She loves to help as much as she can in the kitchen (I was not at all like that as a child). She makes chocolate milk for herself and her brother every morning. She likes to pick out her own clothes and fixes her own hair. Lately, she doesn't want us to tuck her in at night either. Kaitlyn certainly has 'firstborn' qualities, especially with Preston. I call her "Little Mama". She loves to read, draw, and do crafts.

Kaitlyn drew Spongebob on her chalkboard. She says it's for the art class she

has with Preston every week in her room. She is his teacher.

This past weekend, Kaitlyn went to her first sleepover birthday party. She was so excited to go. Again, it's just another milestone on their road to growing up. Preston kept asking when his sister was going to come home.

As parents, we try the best we can. God hears our prayers of anguish, sorrow, and joy. Each day brings a new challenge, a new milestone, and you just keep hoping you are raising your children to be the best they can be. They imitate us and see it through our words, through our actions, and hear it in our prayers. We often wonder how God can give us such an awesome responsibility, to raise these little humans, to live their lives for God and love Him with their whole being.

At the end of the day, when we're exhausted and we reflect back on the day to all that was done and said, we can just peek in on one of our human angels, in a peaceful slumber, and know we are blessed to witness the constant transformation of their lives.

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