Miss Sofia Marie,
Today you turned four years old.
As I sit and look back at the last four years, I feel so much.
So much joy, yes a little bittersweet.
Your birth was in a time of sadness.
Many of our families were falling apart at the seams and yet
I felt like you would be the light that held us together.
Your sister made me an auntie.
She is special in her own way with her quiet grace.
But there was something from the beginning about your temper.
Your inability to stay quiet when you felt sad.
Your bold and bright love that filled me.
It reminded me of myself in so many ways.
You had such personality from the moment you arrived.
Even though your cousin wasn’t so sure about you at first
You have made sure to be the biggest and best pain in his butt.
I’ll tell you a secret, Nana used to dress me and your Noni alike sometimes and it drove us insane.
Take a second when you are older to thank your big sister.
Her quiet grace is something that will come in handy to balance your bold joy.
She loves you so much (although she may not quite know it yet)
I have been so lucky to be able to watch you grow. Snuggle you in times like these.
I look back at these photos and I still cannot believe you are four years old.
But you have continued to grow so quickly, I have the memories to prove it.
And then your first year was over, it felt like a blur.
You continued to grow, never sitting down.
You are so big and beautiful now. Although I never doubted that would be the case.
and it’s not really a secret but just like your sister, you are a daddy’s girl through and through.
Don’t forget to thank him too, I’ve never seen a daddy love his daughters the way yours loves you.
You are so incredibly lucky to have him by your side.
So, my little selfie queen…I hope you find this when you grow.
It won’t be long now until you read but it will be many more years until you can appreciate this.
I don’t have another child of my own, so this is uncharted territory.
But you and your sister have taught me so much about how big a person’s heart is.
How you can love each child for who they are equally and not more than the other.
You are so funny and kind.
Your intelligence and wit even at four astound me.
You drive your daddy crazy and you make your aunties proud.
Keep shining, little one.
And don’t stop laughing, it’s infectious
All my love, Auntie Nikki