Its been quiet on here lately and thats mostly to do with that pretty little face you see above. Our baby girl was born on September 6th and every second of it has been better than we could have imagined. I designed her little birth announcement after these photos were taken when Raleigh was just 5 days old. My talented photographer aunt captured them and I'm smitten. And I'll say it like all the rest of those moms out there say it...the time has gone by so fast!
She was born in the comfort of our home at 4:26 in the morning. I had no idea what to expect of giving birth, other than that it was going to be pretty painful (and it was). But the entire experience went as smooth and perfect as we all could have hoped for. Shane and I got to deliver her ourselves, with the help of our midwife coaching us through it, and that for both of us was our favorite moment of it all. We didn't know if she was going to be a boy or girl before her arrival and when she came it took us a good 10 seconds before we even cared to find out, holding her was perfect enough. So amazing and surreal, all we could do was cry as we stared at her.
Before Raleigh arrived I would hear constantly how "time is going to fly" and "they grow up so fast" and "the love you'll feel for her will be unlike anything else." Most of the time I would just smile and nod while secretly thinking "ok, ya sure, whatever," especially the thing about the love I would feel once she came because, for me, I already felt an immense amount of love for her and everything else in my life. And now here I am on the other side of it all, agreeing with all of those statements. I could never have imagined this change in my heart. Its crazy to think how a tiny little person (who can only at this point in life eat, cry, sleep, and poop) could make my hearts capacity to love become even greater than I thought possible. Before her arrival I would say that I couldn't love Shane any more than I already had, but she changed that. I would say that I couldn't love my family more than I already had, but she changed that. I would say that I couldn't love our God any more than I already had, but of course, she changed that. The first week of her life I wish I could've held every moment in my hand and saved it in a jar to return to and experience again later. Every part of life seems to be brighter, richer, fuller, now that she's here and there's really no way to fully explain it.
We often get asked what our favorite part of all of this is. By far, one of my favorite things is watching Shane be her daddy. When I walk in the room to see him cuddling up beside her just staring at her face, it makes my heart melt. And its crazy how long we can just stare at her for...but I guess that's all you can do when she can't really talk back and it helps that we think she's really cute! She's been a dream, more than what we could've hoped for and asked for and it reminds me all over again how good God truly is. It makes me realize even deeper His love for me and how he delights in and adores me... even if just starting at me is all He can do.