I am not going to lie. This is the second time we have had the joy of celebrating Olivia's birthday at home. It hasn't gotten any easier. Finally, earlier this month it hit me. I wasn't there on her birthday. I didn't carry her for nine months. I didn't feel the pain of labor or the joy when she was placed on my chest for the first time. In fact, I don't even know when her actual birthday is. That unknown date has been one of the hardest things for me to overcome during this whole process. How do I not know the date my daughter entered this world?
Olivia's Gotcha Day holds the same sentiments for me that my biological children's birthdays do. That was the day I first laid eyes on my beautiful daughter, finally felt the weight of her in my arms and was able to lay with her on my chest while she rested that first night.
I think of Olivia's birth mother all the time. I think of her when Olivia does something extra cute. I wish she could see her in that moment. Or when she is sad, I want her birth mother to know I am comforting her. When she learns a new skill I wish she were there to share my excitement. But, the birthday, that's the hardest. Her birth mother knows what it was like to carry her daughter for nine months, to feel the pains of labor and the weight of her newborn on her chest.
It does not seem fair that I am the one to celebrate these birthday milestones.
"A child born to another woman calls me mom. The depth of the tragedy and the magnitude of the privilege are not lost on me"- Jody Landers.
The hard place I hold in my heart for Olivia's birthday is selfish. Because like any other child, Olivia thinks her birthday is the BEST. DAY. EVER, I put on my happy face and delight in the joy that my daughter finds surrounding her special day.
We started our celebrations two days early.
Friday morning she awoke to her new Frozen bike which is what she has asked for day after day for the last two months.
As you can see, she didn't like it at all.
Later that morning we enjoyed a play date with some of our adoption community friends. These girls and their mommies are such a blessing in our lives.
After all of the blue frosting someone wouldn't take a nap but she was ready for play date number two with all of her buddies from our street.
Her big day finally came and we celebrated low key at home with early morning presents, making birthday Olaf treats for her class party, fulfilling a shrimp cocktail request and a special Friendsgiving dinner complete with home made chocolate ice cream cake for the birthday girl.
HAPPIEST OF BIRTHDAYS OUR SWEET GIRL
**Our traditional birthday balloon release to her birth mother had to be delayed due to freezing cold rain. We will send a balloon while we are with her cousins in Kansas this week.