Happy 7th Birthday, ANNABELLE Grace!

Annabelle turns SEVEN today!  It is so hard to believe that we have a seven year old.  Since Skylar turned two in September, I have loved saying, "I have three kiddos...6, 4 and 2."  If I could freeze time, it would be these ages.  6, 4 and 2.  They are all SO much fun at these ages.  But, I have no doubts that this year will also be amazing as Annabelle continues to grow and FLOURISH!  She's just incredible.

I went to bed last night thinking about that exact night seven years ago.  In labor with my first child and having NO CLUE about, well, anything.  Parenting, labor, babies, Down Syndrome, life with kids, etc...  Within minutes, our lives changed for ever and our world was shaken.  Annabelle came in to this world easily and perfectly. With a room full of nurses expecting a challenge, and two brand new parents only expecting a precious baby girl. She came in to this world around 5:25 am on a Thursday morning and this crazy, overwhelming love covered Craig and me in a REALLY powerful way.  If we could see the spiritual world around us, I imagine that it would look like this...
Craig standing next to the hospital bed, me laying in the bed and Jesus standing over us. Above Jesus, a waterfall that is being held back by a leaky gate.  He just has to pull a string to release the water that is continuing to just press into this gate so hard that he is almost having to physically hold it closed until the right time.  Little bits of this water keep seaping through little cracks and holes and falling on to our heads, almost giving us a tiny taste of what this is about to feel like.  He is ready to pull this string that would release a flood of love that almost drowns us.  Then, she comes.  He opens the gate. And we drown.  Drown in this love that is almost crippling.

If you have ever become a parent then you know exactly the love I am talking about.  It is CRAZY.

This is the picture I thought about when I woke up this morning. We are so young and unknowing. Tired, but in love with this precious baby. We knew in this picture. We knew she had Down Syndrome. That didn't change our love.

Today, we will celebrate our special girl. And today and every day will thank Jesus for the gift of ANNABELLE!!!