I'll Love you Forever

I love that book, I'll Love you Forever.  I remember my second grade teacher, Mrs. Spearman, reading it to our class.  I remember soft tears falling at my desk, unembarrassed.  I remember at eight years old understanding the beautiful reciprocity between parent and child and how the role of caregiver slowly and gracefully becomes the mantle of the grown child.

Caregiver has a different meaning to me now, as a nearly 30 year old mother of a special needs child.  Daniel and I don't know how independent Eva will grow to be, and we're at peace with the possibilities.  Right now, we're just two parents trying to teach and discipline Eva with wisdom and discernment.  Growing in trust and love.

And Eva.  That Eva.  She is our first.  Our baby.  I tell her she is my joy, and she knows it.  She's growing, albeit slowly, and learning and changing.  Kids do that.  And it reminds me of this balance (tug of war, really) of letting go and cherishing your baby.  Pushing your child to become independent, allowing her to learn from her mistakes, and yet protecting and nurturing this little girl who was isolated and neglected for her first three years.

First time drinking with a straw.

This was Eva's first time in her stander.  Our office gurus and therapy dog were brought in for moral support.  I love Children's Therapy TEAM.   

This is Eva's first time in her stander at home.  

She's drinking independently.  
She is growing up.