I'm up late, as usual, and thinking of YOU! I can't believe you're 20 today! Holy crap! Time has just flown by! I thought I'd tell you a little about your birth. Let's start about a week before you were born. I started having what are called Braxton Hicks contractions--which are just like "warm up" type contractions that let you have a little glimpse of what a REAL ONE feels like. I had a night where I had them off and on like all night, and my calf kept cramping up into a knot, and I was just SO UNCOMFORTABLE! I remember waking up your dad in the middle of the night to help me rub the knot out of my calf and I was just crying. I told him, "I'm not ready to have this baby! I'm so AFRAID! I can barely handle these stupid leg cramps, and warm up contractions, how the heck am I going to be able to go through a real labor?" Your dad, in all his wisdom, and his no nonsense way says, "Well, it's too late now--what are you going to do? Have an abortion?" I'm pretty sure I punched him, and kept on crying! Ha! He was right. There was no getting out of it now! The day before you were born, my mom called me on the phone to tell me that my Grandma Metzger had passed away. You know I was born on my Grandma's birthday--and your dad was born on his grandma's birthday? Both of them our dad's mom? What are the odds? Anyway, I was really upset about my sweet Grandma. I had always been especially close to her. I used to go stay a few weeks with them every summer, and they managed apartments, and always had a pool to swim in, and we'd swim all day while they sat out and watched us and smoked like a chimney, haha! Her smoking never bothered me much. She was just the kindest, most gentle person. I loved her so much. Her death was unexpected, and it hit me hard. Being emotional anyway, I just cried and cried again that night. Your dad just held me until I fell asleep.
That next morning, I woke up with a horrible contraction. Your dad had already left early for work, and as the contractions started getting closer and closer, I paged him on his pager (haha--you were born in the olden days) and let him know it was time! He was so excited, Em! You should have seen him! I was so excited! I got all dolled up, because, you know, I couldn't have a baby looking like crap! Oh man, that didn't work out so well. I will spare you the details of childbirth, because I don't want to make you cry on your birthday--but can I tell you that when they laid you in my arms, I knew it wasn't the first time we had met? I knew you before we were born, Em. It was just a reunion. That was the most amazing, incredible, miraculous experience of my life! Your tough dad was just a puddle of tears and mush. He was trying to video, and he couldn't . He had to put the camera down, because he didn't want to miss seeing you for the first time with his own eyes. We were in love with you from the moment we saw you! It's a love you can't describe--the love of a mom and dad for their firstborn. It's just this incredible feeling knowing you had a part in creating something so special! When we brought you home, we both had no clue what we were doing. All we knew was that you were meant to be ours. You made us parents, you made us a family, you made us complete! Of course the birth of your siblings was just as incredible, and amazing, and special--but I want you to know that I'm so grateful God sent you to me FIRST. I will always treasure the time those first few years when it was just me & you. The time I had to read to you and snuggle you, and sing to you, and just be a mom of one. And to be honest, I'm not sure anyone else could have handled that as well as you have, Em. We've made so many mistakes, and done so many things wrong. We've struggled so much to be the best parents we could be, and heaven knows we aren't perfect, but you have come through all of that with flying colors! You have always made us look like experts! You have always been obedient, and kind, and smart. I've always thanked Heavenly Father for sending me one of the BEST! So many times, it has been you raising us--not us raising you!
So thank you, Em! Thank you for being born! Thank you for choosing to come to this crazy family! Thank you for making it better! Thank you for always striving to keep the commandments, and listen to the Spirit. Thank you for being a wonderful daughter, and sister, and friend to all--but more than that--a beautiful daughter of God. I know He is proud of you. I know He knows your struggles, and who you need to become. I know that if you listen, He will always be there to help you and guide your path. I hope you have a WONDERFUL BIRTHDAY! We will be singing to you, eating donuts, and thinking of you today! I wish there was a way to send them that they wouldn't be gross--haha! Please do something for yourself & write to Grandma. I think she thinks we steal the money she gives us for your account! Tell her something you bought yourself please, haha!
I love you Emie! Hold your head high. Be proud of who you are! Have a great #20!