Ayva is 3.

Three years ago today, life as I now know it began.  I remember the excitement that I felt on my way to the hospital that morning, May 7th, 2009.  There was no nervousness, no stress. I was calm and felt ready. Thankfully, I was also really naive and clueless about how completely different life would be, how different I would be, on May 11th, 2009 when I finally checked out of the hospital.
Like, for instance, there’d be an actual person that I would be responsible for.
The first night at home, my sister, Ayva’s godmother and godfather all spent the night at my our tiny apartment.  I remember crying because the breastfeeding wasn’t working, and I was tired, and Ayva was crying because that’s what newborns do, and I was just starting to realize”Oh my goodness, there’s an actual person here that I’m responsible for!”  That night was rough. Really rough.
Looking back, it seems like the best night of my life.
Year 2 with Ayva was kind of like that night.  Sometimes, in the thick of two, I felt overwhelmed and frustrated and like I had no control over what was going on.  Ayva was learning to be independent, and with that came some trying and testing of me, and of limits, and of boundaries.  The year was challenging.  Really challenging.
It was also, hands down, the best year of my life.
Ayva has really become my best friend.  She is so open to new experiences and so full of love.  She’s funny, she’s quirky, her imagination is out of this world, she’s strong-willed, smart, asks tons of questions, has loads of physical stamina, loves to dance, has a beautiful singing voice, loves the letter A (obviously) and the color pink, and gives the best hugs ever.
Happy Birthday to my Ayva.  I can’t wait to see how she tops last year.