The images flash through my mind as I calmly remind myself to focus on the moment, not the harder moments of this day and of this time from six years back.
I think everyone has a turning point in their lives.
Some people have several.
There are experiences that lead you to those moments, whether led by fate or chance.
I was led to Addie and it wasn't by chance
it was a turning point to the incredible life that we have.
The last six years of my life have proved to be some of the best years of my life thus far.
Through the moments of pain, grief and fear, I have always maintained the certainty that I wouldn't have wanted any other child and having Addie in any other capacity is never a thought that crosses my mind.
Addie is a beautiful and amazing angel.
One who defies all odds, who overcomes all obstacles and who loves to prove people wrong.
Addie is a beautiful spirit, who has a heart of gold.
She loves with her whole heart.
She is intuitive above all comprehension.
She is the light in the darkest moments.
Oddly enough, each year it is the same.
My heart aches as we celebrate this day, not for the child I thought I may have, but for the confusion and errors in my own mortality.
On year six, my daughter still cannot tell me who she wants to invite to her birthday party.
She cannot tell me what kind of cake she wants or the design to adorn the top.
She cannot give me a wish list of presents a mile long,
so I struggle to fulfill every wish that I imagine she has.
My heart aches because I never want this day to end and to see disappointment in her eyes because I got it wrong.
I search for the right cake, the right clothes, the right presents.
I ask her ad nauseam to tell me what she wants to make her day so special, as I vocalize each detail.
In response, her face lights up with the brightest smile, and I never know which detail made her happy or if it is just hearing me talk to her about everything that I wish I could do to make her day so special for her.
It doesn't take much to see Addie's beautiful smile.
Being surrounded by the people she loves, her endless supply of babies and her cupcake cake makes her the happiest.
Or at least, that is what I imagine makes her the happiest for it is what brings me the most peace.
I can never live my life in the past, although there are always certain memories that I replay.
Memories from this day six years ago.
There are moments I wish I could change, most of them the moments when I was most fearful.
I push Addie to be the best she can be each and every day and if one year from now, she still can't tell me the flavor for her birthday cake, her wish list or guest list, I will find contentment in knowing that we are the lucky ones.
We are blessed for all that we have.
I am thankful for this day, thankful for the opportunity and thankful for all of you who - six years later - are still following our journey and still providing us with the support and love that we so desperately need.
Thank you for your continued support and prayers.
Thank you for loving Addie.
We celebrate this day as we have the last five - in a way that is most precious to our family.
I look forward to 2013 and to the beautiful memories it will hold.
In closing, I am reposting the link to one of my favorite posts.
I am not always good with words, but Strawberry Roan is as close as I can get.