Today is January 11, 2013. Five years ago my water broke as I tried to swing my leg back up on the bed at 2 am, after yet another trip to the bathroom (I swear, if Daddy told me it was OK to pee in the bed, I would have).
I remember being in labor… Harry sliding right out, surprising the nurse as Daddy helped deliver, and the doctor manually breaking my other water to grab Reggie. I never thought about that beforehand. The things you learn with twins.
You guys were so perfect, and so, so tiny. Regs… the clothes I saved that you put on your baby dolls… those little preemie outfits were big on you.
You both came right home with me, and we all marveled how well you both slept (during the day at least), and how you rolled into each other for comfort no matter where we put you. You still end up in the same bed each night, no matter where we put you. You know no other way; you’ve always had each other.
Reagan, you are a beam of light in this world. A larger-than-life bubble of happiness that others want to be around, and only in pictures do I realize how petite you actually are, as your personality fills any room you’re in.
As soon as you had control of your hands, anything you picked up that was circular became a bracelet. You have loved dress-ups and princesses since you were able to point. At 18 months, you made it clear across the family room in my four-inch gold platform heels. I will never forget your look of triumph. You’ve been into my makeup since you were two, and you like my Chanel lip gloss the best. You cry if you have to wear pants, and you demand to wear over-the-top frilly full-skirted dresses that twirl every single day. You love microphones and singing at the top of your lungs. You live each day with true enthusiasm and believe that someday you will grow up to be a real Disney princess. I delight in having a daughter as amazing as you. I cannot wait to watch you grow into a woman as you take the world in stride. You amaze me, and you are part of me, and I love you with all my heart.
You love Harry above all others. You are his protector, self-appointed. He is part of you and you accept him – and expect all others to accept him – as he is. You are the best therapist he could ever have, and, make no mistake, when he is recovered we will all remember how relentless you were in your belief that he should live in your world.
Harrison, my middle child by 11 minutes, who will always be my baby, I love you more than I can even comprehend. I share you with Reagan, but you are mine in a way few others know. You have taught me in your five short years, more than I ever thought I wanted to learn, but I have changed for the better in all the ways that matter.
I have watched you heal this year and am nothing short of in awe of your abilities. You are reading and are performing above age-level in school. Your receptive language is a million miles from where it was this time last year, and I think we are giving autism a run for its money. We will continue to work on healing you, and 2013 will be the year that we defeat apraxia. Already you are starting to say simple two-word phrases like “Mama Up,” “Mama Bye Bye.” That stupid imaginary window that is supposed to be shutting on our faces right now at five? We smashed through the glass and are climbing out carefully to avoid the shards. Reggie is standing on the other side, arms outstretched for you.
Each day you get closer and closer to health. You told your first lie (without speaking, no less), and I could not have been more proud. But don’t tell your siblings, they will say I favor you. It is still an effort, but you can now blow out a candle, and I can’t wait for you to blow out your birthday candles for the first time this year. You love when we sing Happy Birthday and completely understand it is for YOU that we sing.
Today you pointed at me to pay attention, and you swam straight across the pool by yourself. You were so proud to show us what you could do, and your determination does you well. That stubborn streak, that quiet relentlessness, will bring you the rest of the way on your journey.
Harry, you are a beautiful spirit inside and out. You are a steady beacon to Reagan’s bursts of light and you complement each other endlessly. You are beautiful and true. Affectionate and loving. And I cannot wait to see how you will make your mark on the world.
I love you both so much, in ways I never comprehended before you came to be.
Happy, happy birthday, my babies!
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*Photo courtesy of Let Me Be Candid