Wow... how time flies....
Where is Abbigail up to now? Well, she has been out of her spica cast for about 10 weeks, she has had her hernia operation, her gastroscopy, and allergy testing, she is crawling, cruising between the coffee table and the couch, taking steps when her hand is held to balance her, she has at least a dozen "words" that we recognise and she regularly practices, like "light", and "shoes", and "dolly". She is always on the go, and so hard to keep entertained and amused. She is constantly absorbing everything that goes on around her and is a complete bundle of joy!
Looking back at the post from a year ago, it's so hard to describe the emotions that are still there from a year ago, and everything we'd been through over the 4 years previous to that, in the light of what has happened in this last year. There is somehow a disconnect from the anguish of infertility, the longing and hoping, to where we are now - yet it's still there. But at the very least, regardless of future attempts via IVF, God has given us the pleasure of being parents to Abbigail. I've regularly thought - how come we deserve to have such a lovely, wonderfully animated and amazing baby girl - and the answer is that we don't. Everything that we've been through as a family over the last 12 months has been an immense privilege.
Being a father is the most demanding, tiring, hardest, most emotionally rewarding, exciting, exhilarating and tremendous job I've ever done or could ever imagine doing. Hearing Abbigail say Dadadadada, having her hold my hand as she tries to figure out how to take her first steps, having her rest her head on my shoulder as I carry her while doing groceries, are all the things that my heart most longed for in having children. There is so much still to come! I have to remind myself not to focus too much on what the future holds, or I'll miss out on enjoying the here and now. She will only be as she is for a very short time!
Tomorrow Abbigail turns ONE! It's been such a long and hard road this past year. And Abbigail has done so well through it all. We have survived - but when it comes down to it, she is the motivation and the inspiration we have both required to get through it too. It's like the tale of two cities - but more optomistic - It was the worst of times, It was the best of times as well. There simply aren't words to describe how much this last year has meant, how much she means. Tomorrow will be a busy day, and we won't get much time just to dote on her on her special day, but even now, the tears of Joy are right there, willing themselves to fog up my vision as I type. There will be times tomorrow when the emotion will simply be too much - but I think that is the way it is supposed to be. What kind of father would I be if remembering the day when our most special gift was given to us didn't cause at least a little mistiness to remind me just how much this little precious girl means to me - and how far she has come. I hope that never fades...
One day Abbigail, you will no doubt read these words, and possibly wonder how on earth we could get so soppy over you. The saying is certainly true - "when you have your own kids - you will understand". But I hope you understand already how much we love you.
God bless you, now and forever Abbigail.
Abe (and Mummy too)