A sassy, crafty mama bird from Los Angeles
raising a very sweet little girl with Autism
and a new baby boy in the Midwest... and other stuff, too.

Saturday, January 24, 2009

Happy Birthday Little Bird

We've come a long way
And baby
You know I hope and I pray
That you believe me
When I say this love will never fade away
Oh Because
You are the best thing
(you are the best thing, baby)
You are the best thing
(you are the best thing, baby)
You are the best thing
(you are the best thing, baby)
Ever happened to me."
-Ray LaMontagne
Hard to believe that Little Bird is 4 years old today. Time flies, but it's not all been fun. It's been up, it's been down, and trust me, it's been all around.
If only I could give to her a portion of what she's given me. Of course, it sucks having a kid with special needs or any kind of issue, but the more you accept it, the more you can see the blessings that come along with each challenge. Little Bird has given me so many things to be proud of.
I will never forget the day I was trying to get her attention, shouting her name and a stranger said "oh, this is Little Bird?? I've heard so much about her!!" One of the bonuses of giving your kid a unique name is that there's really only one. Turns out that this woman was friendly with a neighbor of mine who was bragging about Little Bird.
Last year at the Relay For Life cancer event, we were walking the track at 10pm (yes, I keep my kid up for a good cause) and Lisa's cousin Al was there and she told us that her friends had told her all about playing with Little Bird at Friendship Circle.
A few months ago we were at PeiWei getting dinner and the girl behind the counter said "This is going to sound weird, but is that Little Bird?? My friend has babysat for her before and loves her so much, she's shown me pictures of her."
Last week when LB went to Torah Circle and was assigned a volunteer, all the others in the room were jealous because they all LOVE Little Bird. I don't even know most of them. My point is, all a mom could ever hope for is that her kid would make a difference in the lives of others. At four years old, mine is already doing that- and for people I don't even know about. Really, how many parents can say that? Nothing makes me more proud.
I always tell therapists or teachers that it will take no time before they fall completely in love with her. It's inevitable. She's so sweet and amazing. I couldn't have been blessed with a more loving kid.
When Little Bird first started talking, I remember her teacher telling me that she was the most polite kid because she so often said Please and Thank You. That's the kind of kid I want to raise.
Little Bird was born with so much hair and she never lost it like so many babies do. Instead, it continued to grow and grow. It's always added to her beauty. All the other babies were bald and their mommies all complained and envied LB's gorgeous locks. Of course, who effing cares about hair, but when they were all able to brag about their kids' milestones being reached, I had the beautiful hair. Little Bird is one inch away from being able to cut and donate her hair so that beautiful hair can help someone else feel just as beautiful. I'm sure people tell all babies and kids they are beautiful, but people literally stop us on the street, in the markets, in airports, etc. There's just something about this kid.
Before she could say mama, she could identify all 26 letters and numbers 1-10. Of course this isn't normal, and isn't necessarily a sign of intelligence, it was still something that impressed others and reminded me that Little Bird is special.
There's a ray of light that shines out of this kid like no other. Everyone who really knows her gets that. Surely there are days when I'm miserable and sick with worry over having a kid like Little Bird, but more and more often I am grateful and feel pretty lucky. Normal is typical, common, boring. We're shaking things up a bit :)
When you have a child for whom things do not come easy, every accomplishment is celebrated. First steps, new words, glimmers of recognition are more than entries in a baby book, they become true milestones and markers of hope; they are true rewards for the hardest work I've ever done... and will continue to do.


Little Bird


lorib said...

she sure as heck is a beautiful and special little girl. happy birthday brodie!!!! xoxo

My name is Erin. said...

This made me cry! She is such a beautiful and special girl. And it's so interesting to read about her, because she reminds me so much of my Abby. Abby has known her letters, shapes, numbers and classical songs long before she ever communicated with us in any way verbally. She would scream her brains out because she wanted milk then turn around and hummm a Tchaikovsky tune in practically perfect pitch. When I was still in denial (which was being enabled by every pediatrician we ever saw) this would drive me crazy, because I thought (hoped) she was just being defiant.

Anyway... I hope Brodie & Abby get to play together soon. They have so much in common

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