When one of my uncles met Gerard for the first time, he lost no time in telling Gerard that "With Carrie, what you see is what you get. She'll tell you like it is." Clearly, there's a genetic trait of Bluntness in my bloodstream.

So, I'm going to tell you like it is: Motherhood is not for the faint of heart.

Long before Adelaide was even on our radar or an ultrasound machine, I would think to myself some days that it would really stink to be sick and have to take care of someone else too. God has an amazing sense of humor and delivered exactly that when we delivered Adelaide. For the first 5 1/2 months or so of her life, I felt terrible due to

post-delivery difficulties

, and honestly, it's carried some emotional baggage with it.

With the different medical events that happened, I had several nurses tell me that if "X" happened to call 9-1-1 immediately. It stirred up an intense fear each time I was alone with Adelaide that "X"

might

happen. I wasn't afraid of Adelaide, I was afraid of being alone with her. In the nature that is Gerard's job, there were ample opportunities for me to be alone with her and each time, that fear would become more and more intense. Almost paralyzing.

In essence, I was living one of my nightmares: taking care of someone else in addition to feeling absolutely terrible. Thankfully, Adelaide has been thriving, growing like a weed, and is generally, the most joyful person I know despite all this. The yellow dress below is the same one she wore as a 2 week old for her dedication. Proof of her growing: we broke the zipper trying to get her in it! Ah, the price you pay for cute photos:

(iphone photo the day she was dedicated)

 It's amazing to me that this sweet human came out of my body and has now been OUT of my body as long as she was IN it. In several of my prenatal visits, I was told that I needed to enjoy the time she was IN me because she would give us a run for our money when she was OUT. She seems pretty happy to have ample room to move and is fulfilling that expectation to a "T".

When I say that Motherhood isn't for the faint of heart, there are moments that I honestly can't believe she's mine and that I'm a M-O-M. When I try to comprehend that this little life is in my care, my heart bursts and it's almost too heavy to hold (much like carrying her in her car seat these days..!...) She's my side kick, my hip-attachment and she helps me slow down and discover the world anew.

 (pssst! Laidy has now tripled her birth weight and outweighs Ella by about 1lb!!)

 Before we got married, people would tell me that marriage is "hard work". And only after we were married did I see what they meant. People have told me the same about parenthood and I now see what they mean: I have never laughed so hard as I have with Laidy, I've never felt so many emotions wrapped up around one person, and I've never worked so hard for another. (yes, I've worked hard for Gerard, but thankfully, he's capable of feeding himself! :) ) She has made me a better photographer (sympathetically seeing my clients in a whole new light), a better teacher (I look at someone else's child with fresh eyes) and a better person in general. She's only been in my life for 9 months!

I'm so fortunate to have been entrusted with this little person. I'm incredibly thankful she's healthy and has a vivacious, curious, joy-filled personality. How is it that I'm already brainstorming for her FIRST birthday?!

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