Dear Evie,

Today you entered the realm of normal.

You will hear me and your father tell you quite often that normal isn’t all it’s cracked up to me. We will encourage you to embrace what makes you different and unique. We will encourage all your little quirks and idiosyncrasies because they are what makes you you and not some carbon copy of your parents.

But today – today I am happy to have you be normal. Because today you graduated from wearing your braces 23 hours a day to only 12. Which means when you’re at daycare with all the other babies you now look like all the other babies. You can wiggle your little chubby toes like everyone else. And when you swing your legs up to investigate your feet you aren’t playing with suede, buckles, and a metal brace. Your club foot looks like your other foot, if a little smaller and fatter. If someone were to see your feet today they would never know that you’ve had casts and been wearing braces for almost all of your short life.

Right now you don’t understand it all. You don’t know that having your feet outside of the braces is anything different. You’ve only ever really know a cast or brace being on your foot so for you, my sweet daughter, that is the norm. But it’s not. And when you’re older you’ll understand that sometimes it’s nice to be normal.

Normalcy is something so many parents don’t have to think about. They have their little adorable babies and never have to think about anything other than the typical what do we do with a baby? Your father and I have spent your entire life, and even before you were born, worrying about your foot. We’ve had to be careful with heavy casts and make sure to not get them wet. We’ve spent so many nights hearing your cries as we pulled tight your shoes to force your club foot to grow properly.

I wouldn’t change you for anything. I wouldn’t even change our experience. In the grand scheme of things there are other parents out there who have had to deal with so much more. Your club foot doesn’t change how much I love you, or how much your entire family loves you. If it was possible I would say it makes us love you more. We see how you don’t let it hold you back, rolling over and holding up your head before anyone else expected you to. Your disposition is one of the happiest babies I’ve ever encountered. You won’t remember the casts or getting your Achilles cut but I can see, even at this young age, how these experiences have shaped and strengthened you.

Today I am happy to have you look like a normal baby. But know that doesn’t mean that I don’t love your uniqueness. I will celebrate it each and every day of your life. I will encourage you to be who you are, no matter what mold society is trying to make you fit into. I will be that voice in your head that strengthens you and your confidence in who you are.

But today…today I will be content to know my baby is just like all the other babies.

Love,
Mama B

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