When I found out I was pregnant I was only eighteen, had just gotten married, and already had two stepchildren. (For those that are getting confused, this was a previous marriage.) I was nervous, but excited beyond words. Being the oldest child and grandchild in my family, it seems like I grew up with a baby on my hip. All I ever wanted was to have a baby of my own. They say every little girl dreams of her wedding day, but the only reason I wanted to get married was because every time I said, "I can't wait to have a baby," my Mimi told me I had to get married first. (I guess I could have argued with that---- since the first test tube baby was born while I was a teenager.) LOL
Anyway, I took her advice, got married and the next month I'm sitting in the doctor's office and the nurse is confirming what I already knew. I was pregnant. My response? "OK, now what?" =)
Eight months and ten hours of all natural labor later, there she was. August 1, 1984 at 12:12 AM weighing 7 pounds 12 ounces. I was alone in my hospital room when, just before dawn, the nurse brought her to me. I laid her on my legs, pulled back the blanket, and just took her all in. I marveled at the tiny fingers and toes. I kissed the brown fuzz on her head. I whispered her name and her eyes met mine. She was so perfect, so delicate, so beautiful it literally took my breath away. That sweet time remains one of the most spiritual experiences in my life.
That was just yesterday, right?!
Mallory at 3 months. See what a pretty baby!
Mallory was the sweetest, best natured baby. Her oldest cousin used to tell me all the time, "When I get married I want only one kid and I want her to be JUST LIKE MALLORY!"
She didn't sleep much, but made up for it by rarely crying. I'd have to remember to feed her every four hours. =) Once when she was about eight months old, she'd been throwing up all night with a virus. The next morning I went to pick her up out of her crib. She just lay there too weak to sit or pull up, but still trying to smile at me. I took her to the doctor and the poor thing was dehydrated! Even painful teething didn't bring tears. If it hadn't been for the poop running out of her diaper and down her leg, you'd never have known she was teething. Gross, I know, but true!
She was the funniest little kid! I never knew what was going to come out of her mouth. (Still don't know. She is the entertainment at every family gathering!) It was a little embarrassing at times, especially when Larry and I started dating. She started calling him "Aunt Larry" and discussing bodily functions with him. Joy! He married me anyway. LOL
Mallory at 3 1/2. So cute!
Here she is at ten with her sisters. Mallory is on the right, Sarah on the left, and Shelbi in the front.
As a teenager, she gave me no cause for concern. She was active in the church youth group and got up early before school so she'd have time to read her Bible. Some mornings I'd go in her room to find she'd fallen back asleep--- her Bible still open beside her. I never got called to the school by a teacher or principal. From pre-K through high school, her teachers always said they wished all their students were like her. That's music to any mom's ear, but especially if that mom's a teacher herself. LOL
Senior Prom with her best friend, Casey. Mallory is in the blue dress. They looked so pretty.
All too soon, she headed off to college. Even though she was only two hours from home, Miss Homebody was miserable. After the first term, she came home and enrolled at the local junior college. There she found her soul mate Daniel, and they've been married three years. (Click HERE and see their wedding pics.) They live three hours away, where Mallory is taking classes while also working full time. She's working toward an elementary education degree. I'm so proud of her! Before I know it, she'll be a mom and teacher herself. :)
Twenty five years later, I still catch myself looking at her and thinking, "This came out of me?" This beautiful creature that still takes my breath away?
HAPPY BIRTHDAY, MALLORY!!!
ALL OUR LOVE,
MOMMA, DADDY, & SHELBI