Today's Chaya Gitty's (English) birthday. She's just a year old but...so much happens in one year. The amount of growth and development I see in my daughter from when she was a tiny newborn until now is amazing. She can already say a few words, she crawls (and her older brother likes to copy her :-) ) and will soon be walking!
I had this same thought when I wrote a post on SB's first birthday but it hit me again this morning. Look at how much a baby changes in the first year of their life. They learn so much about the world around them and develop from a newborn who is unable to do anything but cry, eat and make in their diapers to real little people. Little people who are slowly discovering so much about their own little world. Chaya Gitty is a whole new person already. She's little but she knows and understands so much.
This made me think about how much I did in this past year. How much did I change? I know a lot changed around me and there were so many stories that happened in the past year but did they change me?
When I put my daughter to sleep tonight and sang to her, my eyes filled with tears and I began to cry. I couldn't finish the song. I just looked at her precious little eyes staring right back at me, sweet, innocent eyes and let myself cry. I cried tears of appreciation and tears of hope. I looked at her with such appreciation and gratitude to Hashem for giving me such a sweet, soft princess of a baby. It such a bracha to be blessed with such a gift. And I cried tears of hope for the future...and I davened. I davened for her to be good in every sense of the word, to have good friends when she grows up and to always be happy.
Every parent wants their child to be happy. Do we begin to realize how much our parents do for us and to what lengths they go to try to make us happy? They make decisions based on how they think it would affect us and always have our good, our ultimate good in mind. We should appreciate all they do, speak to them with respect and realize just how much they do for us.
I once heard that Hashem put the parent-child relationship into this world so that we could learn how to relate to Him. Just like a parent does so much for a child but the child cannot fathom how much the parent really does, so too, Hashem does so so much for us and we can't even begin to imagine how much He really does for us. Of course it takes no effort on His part to do all that He does but do we realize how much we have to be grateful for? He keeps us alive and healthy and gives us so much bounty. Family to care for us, friends to have fun with, so many choices of foods to eat...every little detail of our lives, every little and big blessing all comes from Him. Spend some time every day saying thank you to your Father in Heaven!
A birthday, from the very first one, can be used as a day to think about and thank Hashem for all the blessings and good things He has given you. I am so lucky to have a daughter as precious as Chaya Gitty and I hope to continue to feel this deep gratitude to Him for all the good Hashem will continue to shower upon our family.
Any sprinkles left on the cupcake? (She's too little for a whole big cake :-D)