Happy 21st Birthday Jade!
What is 21 years? 7665 days. 183960 hours. 11037600 minutes. When you are a little girl 21 years seems like a lifetime. But when you are a parent 21 years seems like yesterday.
I remember the day that Jade was born like it was just yesterday. My back had been bothering me for the better part of the evening. I decided to soak in a nice warm tub to see if that would ease the back pain. It did for a while, until I woke up in the tub and the water had turned quite chilly! I decided that I should get Joe to take me to emerg to see if they could do anything about my back pain. He had to take the dogs out for a run first and then we'd go. So off to the hospital we went. We called Joe's niece Nancy, just in case, because she was going to be in the delivery room with us, and Joe headed off to work. I was only there for about an hour when we had to call him at work and tell him if he wanted to see this baby born, he best be getting his butt back to the hospital! So much for pre-natal telling you that your first one can take 12- 24 hours or longer. I was almost 6 cm dilated when I went in...so I guess that back pain wasn't really back pain at all! Within 4 hours of me getting to the hospital, Jade was born. I couldn't believe I actually did it! I didn't cry when she was born. I wasn't sure how I felt about that. In all the movies everyone cries when their baby is born. Why didn't I? Was I going to be an awful mother cause I didn't cry when she was born? I have cried many times since then. So I think I'm okay. It's interesting how when you become a Mom you cry at virtually EVERYTHING, but the best tears are the tears of happiness for how proud you are because of something your child has done or said that makes your heart swell. I have had many of those moments because of Jade. Her time at City Council, her first ballet recital, her first "sparkle up", achieving her Canada Cord for Guides, grade 8 graduation where she achieved valedictorian, high school graduation where she over came recovering from a car accident and some "human" errors that had made the actual possibility of her graduating up for question, her move to Windsor to start college and then her decision to stay in Windsor.
I look at her today and wonder how we got here. How did we go from a sweet baby girl to a grown woman in such a short time? So, I'm going to share some of my trip down memory lane with you.
I remember the first time we put this little outfit on Jade. We had to walk over to Grandma Lines' house to show it off. Grandma Lines' couch was a good one for the little ones. It had lots of cushions so you could snuggle them right in between the cushions and they could sit up on their own for a bit.
The jolly jumper was the first "real" freedom she got. She would bounce in that thing for hours.
Dusty was quite often used as a pillow.I'm not sure how Dusty felt about it, but Jade was quite comfortable.
Our old pal, Oggie, was never far away from Jade. I remember when we she first slept in her crib, Oggie would sleep underneath it and protect her.
Spending time at Granny and Poppa's was something Jade loved to do. They had this old high chair that I think might have been mine and Diana's at one time and it got them right up close to the table.
I loved this little hat. It just made me smile every time I put it on her.
When Jade was 18 months old, she and I went to Arizona to visit Aunt Diana, Uncle Jeff and Eric. She used to get up on the treadmill and walk when Diana and I were chatting. She and Eric got along really well too.
She always had a smile.
Then Joel came along. From the minute he was born, Jade has been a "mother hen" to him. She loves him more than words can say. She always protected him no matter what. I remember for a while they
were both in cribs and in the same room. Jade used to throw stuffed animals from her crib into Joel's crib to make sure he had toys to play with. (we made sure we didn't put her to bed with "hard" toys!)
She can pretty much fall asleep anywhere. Still to this day!
She loves going up North to spend time with Grandpa Wayne. He taught her how to fish and catch frogs!
We were very lucky to have Wendy and Ray and Janet Larcher as babysitters. They treated the kids like their own and we were so blessed to have them.
When we were kids Granny and Poppa always got us to get a "happy" and a "sad" picture taken on the first day of school. I think this is "happy" and "I have an attitude"!!
Jade LOVES the farm. She has always dreamed of someday having her own place where she can have some animals.
First day of Grade 7...sportin' the short hair!
We spent some time at Winter Wheat with my BFF Vicki...that's how we actually got a few pictures of Jade and I together.
I love her face. She can be so animated and then in the next moment she can be deep in thought.
Jade was blessed to have good role models in her life. Guiding was a large part of Jade's growing up and Liz was there for her through thick and thin. It made me happy to have Liz celebrate Jade's grade
8 graduation with us. I've always tried to teach the kids that communication is so very important in every relationship in your life. I encouraged Jade to talk to people who she was comfortable talking to. If she couldn't talk to me about something, find someone who she could talk to. Liz was this person.
One of our proudest moments was Jade's grade 8 graduation. Not being a math scholar......she made it her goal for grade 8 to get the best mark in the class in math and to be valedictorian. She achieved both of these goals. WHATEVER she sets her mind to...she can achieve.
High school brought on it's own set of challenges, but one great thing that happened in high school was Jade's foreign exchange. We met a wonderful German girl Ines and Jade traveled to Germany to
spend time with her family. I'm sure it's a trip and an experience she will never forget. (and yes, I WILL get that scrapbook made!)
Jade had a very special bond with Granny. She would walk across the field at lunch and go and visit with Granny in the nursing home. I'm so glad she got to spend as much time as she did with her.
Ever since they were little - these two.....even when they are driving me crazy they are there for each other. I think that has to be one of the things I am proudest about, that my kids love each other and enjoy each others company.
A new chapter with graduating from high school and heading off to college. St Clair college in Windsor was her destination. Mom even donated "love frog" so she wasn't alone, and after 4 years and 3 different courses she's wrapping it up at the end of this month.Windsor has been good for Jade. She has spread her wings , increased her self confidence, found employment and recently a new apartment. It's going to be strange having her call another place "home" but we are very excited for her.
My beautiful girl.
I love you more than words can say. I am so proud of the strong young woman you have become.
I love you, Jade