It was Wednesday, June 29th 2011, and Dr. Stitt’s team was preparing the operating room for your arrival. Everything was perfect and within just a few minutes, Daddy was packing you out into the waiting room to show you off to all of our family and friends that had gathered there. Sophie was the first one to see you. She was so excited to be your big sister.
That first night in the hospital was tough as you cried and cried and cried. At some point during the night Daddy looked at me and said…”This kid’s got colic.” And you did. For the next four months we bounced you through hour after hour of crying. Daddy and I didn’t know how to help you, and so sometimes we would cry, too. But one day, out of the blue, you just stopped. And you were happier. And life got better.
From the word “go” you have always been busy. In fact, you didn’t sleep through the night until you were 13 months old; I was convinced it was because you didn’t want to miss anything. And that’s still how you are today, never wanting to miss out on all of life's adventures. Whether it's playing golf, learning to swim, or helping me crack eggs for a breakfast omelet, you are always ready for each new adventure no matter how big or how small it may be.
It’s not all perfect. You have an uncanny ability to break things. Your first instinct when faced with confrontation is to lie. And just last week you told Sophie you were “gonna kick her a**”. But as frustrating as those facets of you can be, they all fade into the background with every big hug that you wrap around my neck, with every offer to help around the house that you give, and with every sweet and precious “I love you” that you sing.
It has been such a joy watching you grow up into the little girl you are today. You have so many wonderful qualities, Carter Jane. You make friends easily, even with adults, and your smile and laughter is magnetic. You love to get your hands dirty and try new things, never getting discouraged if you don’t get it right the first time. You recognize and appreciate the simple joys in life, whether it’s riding your bike in a tutu, sipping lemonade on the porch steps, or running through the sprinkler in your undies. You find the joy and you drink it up. Your grown-up personality and quick wit are part of your charm and your blue eyes take my breath away.
Daddy and I are so proud of you and we look on with great expectation at all the great things you will accomplish. You are special, Carter Jane, and there is no one quite like you. Happy Birthday!