Right now I'm going through all of Annabelle's old clothing. Four years worth of memories packed away in diaper boxes. Each outfit and onesie lovingly folded away and placed in a marked box so that I could easily find them if we ever needed them again. We don't need them anymore and no one I know has any baby girl's, so I'm hoping to make a little bit of money. But it doesn't make it any easier to look at each and every one of those pieces of clothing. I can remember her wearing every piece; footie jammies, holiday dresses, jeans and onesies.
There are some outfits that I am keeping. I simply cannot imagine another little girl wearing her elf pants. They are red, pink, and white striped pants with little attached footies. I would put her in those pants all the time for more than 6 months, red shirts at Christmas time, pink at Easter. We got our monies worth on those (they were free, from a friend of mine's cousin who had never put them on her daughter!). I keep having little flashback memories while holding her tiny little shoes in my hands. It makes it so hard to believe that she was ever that small or that she is now so big!
I love all of the things that she does now that she's 4 years old but I miss my little baby girl. I miss the way she would curl herself into a tiny ball and fall asleep on my stomach when she was only a few weeks old. I miss breast feeding even though it was so awful at the time, but it was me and Annabelle time and no one else could do what I was doing. I miss smelling her baby smell and seeing the dimples in her elbows and knees. I miss the awe and wonder we all felt when she did something new. I would brag about how easily her first tooth came in, e-mail everyone I knew all of her latest stats from the doctor, cheered her first steps. Some of my family and friends laughed at me because I was such a new mom, thinking that everyone was as amazed as I was.
I'm still amazed at her and even though I don't always brag out loud to every person I pass anymore, I'm still so proud of her and things she can do. She can write her name, count to 20, dress and undress herself and she can almost go potty completely on her own now (she's too short to reach the light switch in the bathroom). And she's starting pre-k this fall!
Going through all of her all things made me remember how much we have accomplished together as a family. She is brand new to me every day but at the same time she's always been here.
As NeYo put so perfectly - You're the best thing I never knew that I needed.
I love you Annabelle Rae.