Friday, October 11, 2013

Princess...the First

Sweet Baby Girl...

The day Mommy and Daddy found out you were going to be a girl, we knew we wanted to raise you to be sweet, caring, and genuine.  We wanted you to be smart and independent and confident.  Daddy also vowed to raise you to be a girl who liked worms, wasn't afraid of dirt, and would play golf and tennis.  Most importantly, Daddy wanted you to be everything EXCEPT a princess.

For Mommy, that meant no shopping for frilly pink outfits, printed shirts or labels that implied anything remotely related to princesses.  Hair bows and cute shoes were about the extent of the girly stuff Mommy got for you.  Mommy loved that! Just like Daddy, though, I wanted you to be raised to love the boy stuff and the girly stuff the same.  I wanted you to be well-rounded and thought it should be up to you to decide what you liked.  

Pajamas were some of Mommy's favorite things to get for you.  There is something about the look and feel of a baby in feeted pajamas that still gives Mommy a warm, fuzzy feeling.  You always looked adorable in them and seemed so comfortable parading around the house in your cozy pjs.  It seemed like you were always growing out of them.  Mommy was always on the lookout for cute prints, soft fabrics, and ones that steered away from anything princess.  Mommy even had your Donna Ma on the hunt for them when she was out shopping.

After a visit with your Donna Ma, you came home with some pretty spring-colored pjs. A pink pair and a purple pair.  Your Donna Ma said she was a little unsure about the pink cheetah print ones, but thought that your Daddy would be ok with them.  Mommy thought they were super sweet.  

A few weeks went by and we found ourselves on vacation with our friends and their little ones.  Skylar, Jacob, Elly Kate, and you were the perfect mix of ages to make the week so much fun! One morning, early in the week, Mommy walked you down to the kitchen for breakfast.  There in the living room was Aunt Mary and your sweet little friend, Elly Kate.  Aunt Mary and Mommy were tickled to see that you girls had on matching pajamas!  As Mommy walked you closer to play with Elly Kate, I noticed something was slightly different.  I turned and looked closely at the kitty cat on your pink jammies, then looked back to Elly Kate's.  Just below the white kitty was a small, rectangular shaped word. As I looked again and moved even closer I could read the word.  The word was PRINCESS. 

I gasped, then laughed out loud. It took me just a second to realize what your Donna Ma had done!  Knowing your Daddy would have a fit, your Donna Ma had carefully snipped away the threads that surrounded the tiny label. Without a hint of evidence, Mommy and Daddy never noticed.  That day we had a good laugh as all of Mommy's friends gave Daddy a hard time for not letting you be a princess.  Daddy was a good sport!

It was about a month after this that you passed away.  A few weeks later, your Donna Ma gave Mommy the clipped-off label.  She had kept it all along.  I'm not sure why, but I like to think that she always thought of you as her little princess.  Mommy treasured that little label then and still does today.  I keep it in a special box by itself in Mommy's night stand. Occasionally I will think about it and smile remembering that funny day on vacation.

Secretly and lovingly, you always were Mommy and Daddy's first little princess.

In a few weeks it will be Halloween.   This week Layne said she wanted to dress up as Sophia the First...a princess.  This afternoon Layne and I pretended to be princesses in the backyard.  As we were holding up our pretend dresses she told me, "Mommy, I want you to be Princess Amber for Halloween!"  Such a sweet thought from such a tender-hearted little girl.  Mommy couldn't help but sigh.  Amber is Sophia's sister.

If you were here Mommy is certain that Layne would have asked you to be Amber.   If you were here I imagine you and Layne doing all the things that sisters do.  Mommy has healed so much in the last three years, but my heart still breaks to see your sister play alone when she should be playing with you.

We wish you were here for your sister to love on like she loves on us.  We wish you were here so that Layne could share her love of fairies and books and music and dancing with more than her teddy bears and baby dolls.  We wish you were here so that Layne could learn about being a big girl.  We wish you were here so that we could know which princess you would like to be.  We wish you were here so that our hearts would be doubly filled with the kind of joy Layne brings to our days.

We love you.  We miss you. We remember you always...