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Dear Eisley (four months)

Dear Eisley,

When you were just three days old, we took you to church. It was Easter Sunday, and although my body was achy and exhausted and my milk was coming in, I wanted nothing more than to worship God for the new life we have in Christ while holding you – precious new life in my arms. During the service, still riding high on the lingering adrenaline of labor and delivery and completely enamored by your little newborn self , I thought, “We must have another baby. We need four babies for sure.”

Over the next two months that feeling changed. Your older sisters starting showing some angst over having a new sibling around, we moved to a new house, you went through the normal newborn stage where you have to be held at all times. The 3am feedings wore me down. There were many tears in our house. I would joke that someone was always crying… sometimes you, sometimes your sisters, sometimes me. Suddenly, I wasn’t sure I could handle more kids. You were a good baby – actually eating and sleeping fairly well – but the sheer weight of having three kids under age four felt too heavy to bear.

Things smoothed out in month three. We got settled in our new house, traveled a bit as a family, you were consistently sleeping through the night, and taking a bottle easily (after a short strike the months prior). Micah and I began having the conversation again — do we want a 4th child? “Eisley is sooooo sweet,” we’d exclaim as we stared at you sleeping in your crib. “She’s just the best little baby,” we’d whisper over you as you nursed in our bed. Of course, we want another baby just like you.

Now we are in month four, and our conversation has shifted again. Maybe you should be our last baby, for exactly the same reasons we would entertain having another. You are so sweet. Smiley all day, sleepy all night. You laugh at our antics, endure the aggressive hugs of your sisters, and have adapted just fine to having a nanny and taking a bottle on the days mom has to go to work. You love to be held by dad and fed by mom. You are living up to your name, which means “cheerful.” Maybe we should stop on a good note. The best note really. Everyone says you have to have one hard baby. One that throws you for a loop. You are proving them wrong, sweet girl. You are happy and easy, just like your sisters. Why not stop now and show the world that having a difficult baby may be the norm, but there are beautiful exceptions to that rule.

It takes a darling little baby to make us waffle like we do. On the one hand, the thought of having a fourth child as happy and chubby as you sounds like a dream. On the other hand, why don’t we just soak in your sweet baby days and then move on to the next stage of running, talking, potty-trained, school-aged children and experience the adventures that lie ahead for our quiver-full of little ladies? Only time will tell, and until it does, we will enjoy this season our baby Eisley-girl. You teach us to savor and yearn, which is what this life is all about anyway — savoring the moment with gratitude and joy while yearning for a Kingdom yet to come.

All my love,

Mama

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