Her birthday was a mix of joy and sadness, for moments that are now gone and moments that I am sure are coming. I cried for questions I have yet to find the answers to, and dreams that I have yet to support her in. I cried for that day she laid on my chest and fed at just 6 pounds. I cried for the inexplicable love she brings Peter and me. I cried about everything, and she let me. That morning I held her tight, whispering in her ear a drawn-out explanation of how long she’s been alive.
Here’s what I have learned about five so far: it is beautiful and full of lessons. River sees the world differently now. There are more questions to follow up every answer. Her mind is opening to things I don’t feel quite ready to explore yet. She is flooded with wonder. Even though parts of me are surprised that we are here already, she forces me to scan back into my childhood and remember what it’s like. I feel beyond connected to the person she is, which can be scary but is also so beautiful.
I love you, River
(photo from her birthday party in January)