Monday, June 16, 2014

Don't Forget To Remember Me

Let me start off by just saying… These two girls are. my. life. I cannot even begin to ponder what life would be like without them. They have grown before my very eyes and I can’t help but think to myself how time LITERALLY flies by.

It seems like just yesterday that she was a little bundle in a teddy bear blanket with a broken collar bone and had her baby Looney Tunes bedding in her crib. I remember it well. White with baby Looney Tunes with pink, yellow and blue balloons…

18 years ago, I was in 2nd grade and at my elementary lunch break. I was eating my chicken burger and then my teacher, Miss Smith, dressed in her Marvin Martian button up came to find me to tell me that my dad was there to pick me up. [Side Note: Looney Tunes were so popular during my youth.]  I met my dad and my “shadow,” my kid sister, Ashley, in the front office and Ashley was screaming, “We’re gonna go see our new sister!” As if I didn’t speak English and understand her first 300 times she had said it, she kept repeating it all the way to the hospital.

We get to the hospital and find our mom in her bed and next to her, we saw this cabbage patch looking baby with dark hair in her bed. Dad introduced us to the baby, named Chandler Emily. Ashley and I said “Hi Chandler” and then kept staring at her. Ashley proceeded to ask if the baby could be held. Ashley held the baby first and when her arm got tired of holding her 10 pound, 6 ounce body, she asked me if I wanted to hold her. I looked at Ashley as if she was crazy, but since the baby’s collar bone was broken, [intentionally broken due to her size], I hesitated and then declined. I was afraid I was going to hurt her or break her since her collar bone was already in shambles but I knew right away that we were going to be close.

Well this baby named Chandler grew to be a toddler and this kid followed me EVERY.WHERE! I couldn’t take a shower alone or sleep in my own bed, let alone go pee without her asking me “Ham, what are you doing?” then watch like someone peeing in a big people toilet was the most interesting thing on the planet…
When Chandler was still on bottles, she would wake up in the middle of my bed in the middle of the night and crying cause she lost her blankie; which in our family, was famously known as her “bunt,” or wanted me to go to the kitchen cause she wanted “more milk.” Ugh. Already a pain in my rear end…

Well this Chandler character kept growing, becoming who she is today- a beautiful, yet sassy, funny 4 year old in a 18 year old’s 6 foot 2 inch, Varsity basketball player’s body. She is still a pain in my rear but if she ever needed anything, EVER, I would still be there for her. Hell, I make her new “bunts” and refill her damn milk glass for her after she’s gulped it down after chompin down her Oreo’s. She is my “little/big” sister and always will be. [Unless you are into our inside joke, she will always be my “other child.” Lol].

My little sister, Chandler Emily, but my big sister, Chandler Emily, since she has grown taller than me is STILL following me around, sleeping in my bed, taking my stuff and my car without asking, eating my food… But still, 18 years later, we are still just as close as when we were when she was just a little tyke, [ya know, 10 feet 6 inches ago] following me around, repeating every word I said, doing everything I did…
I didn’t want to break her when she was born, but I swear, some days more than others, I want to. 18 years later, I still love her to death, and couldn’t be any more proud of her.

Her future holds so many new wonderful things. She graduated high school and now is moving into college, attending Lewis & Clark to study sports medicine and will be playing her first year of college level basketball. That little tyke has grown up so much and I can’t wait to see her experience her next chapter in life. Her accomplishments are simply MIND BLOWING. Chandler, I love you! I hope you know that!


Now, THIS little bug IS my baby. I cannot believe how big she has gotten!

It seems like over night she has grown into her sweet 5 year old self. August 14th, 2008 at 3:57 PM seems like only a minute ago.

She has always been so smart, creative and attentive to details. She did the best job in her daycare/preschool so I was for sure she would love going to kindergarten. She love love loved everyday at school with Mrs. Reed and her best friend Miss Ava.

Chi Chi is an only child, but she has always done so well sharing and interacting with other children. She made so many new friends this year and she has built what appear to be lifelong bonds with some of them. Miss Ava and her little sister Norah will always be lifelong friends for us. We have connected wonderfully with the girls and girls’ parents. Lots of play dates and parties, and Miss Ava’s mother Sara and I have become great friends as well. I’m so thankful for that.

I know she is only 5 and has only graduated from Kindergarten, but it is such a bittersweet moment as a parent and such a wonderful milestone in a child’s life.

I can’t believe how much bigger she gets everyday and I keep thinking back to when she was just my little rollie pollie baby in her elephant blankie in her jungle babies themed room falling asleep to her nature sounds, watching her fishies swim around in their tank. She was my little bunny with dark hair and blue eyes, clinging onto my fingers, who loved bright colors and Backyardigans…

Hold that thought while I grab a couple tissues… =’(

My bunny is now tall, skinny, blonde and quite an artist. She loves to color, draw, paint… she does the best drawings I’ve ever seen and I love seeing what she brings home from school everyday that she made with her classmates.

She’s growing, growing, growing and almost up to first grade and I’m very proud of her and everything she has learned so far. My sweet child is finding her place in this big big world and I can only hope she knows I will always be here for her, cheering her on, loving her, and caring for her.

Malia Noela, your mommy loves you, more than you will ever know. You are my “best baby” and you will always be my once in a lifetime love. You are the best thing that has ever happened to me and you will never know how special you are to me. To my miracle baby, I LOVE YOU.

“When you pray, pray for strength, to help you carry on when the troubles come your way. And when you dream, dream big- as big as the ocean blue. 'Cause when you dream it might come true…So when you dream… Dream big.” –Ryan Shupe.

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