Beginning of October, Beginning of the Fun Times of the Year in the Queen Household

So today marks the last day of September. And tomorrow begins October, and then the celebrations are in full swing around our house. Already, we have celebrated Annabelle turning 3 (God bless her) in August, and mine and my wife’s anniversary in September (I even remember the time of our first kiss as Husband and Wife), now in the next 5 months things get fun and time seems to pass quick. October: Ayanna turns 5; I have a birthday too in there lol; Halloween (“Great Pumpkin Patch” on DVD gets dusted off!!). November: Thanksgiving (I make a MEAN bird…haven’t decided how I’m cooking it this year. Last 2 years I smoked it, and it was DAMN good). December: Christmas, New Year’s Eve. January, New Years, My wife’s birthday (SHE’LL BE 30!!!). February: Valentine’s Day (yes, this time of year, because time tends to fly, I have already obtained my wife’s Valentine’s Gift. If not, I’ll look up and find myself like those poor miserable guys wandering around like zombies, days before V-Day). So yeah, I sometimes feel like this time of year was built for our family. It’s already so festive anyway, and our milestones are wrapped around it. I Love It!

So as my wife and I are days from Ayanna turning 5, I am in awe of her. The other day, we were all in the car, and she was explaining to me how Halloween works. And I fought back happy tears, just watching her face, her mannerisms, and her dedication to making sure I understood how it worked. And her pride in knowing she explained something to her Father that he never knew about (yes I play along for these moments for them to build up their self-esteem). She is such a little person now.

I remember napping on the couch and my wife coming in the door at our apartment in Memphis, Tennessee, and her going straight to the bathroom. I remember when she came running in the living room, scaring the crap out of me to grab me and wake me up. The look in her face when she said, “I’M PREGNANT” has a permanent space in my heart. I remember waking up one day, Damary (at the time 8 months pregnant) and I having breakfast in the kitchen, like we always had done. I kissed her, and headed to work. I got a call from her 20 minutes into me being at work, and she said, “I had to leave the apartment, there is a fire next door, and….” The phone went dead. I remember the fear and praying out loud to God as I drove in excess of 90 m.p.h. to get to her and our unborn “Peanut” (we never knew if she was boy or girl, so that was my nickname when I talked to Damary’s belly every night). I remember going into the hospital for Damary to get induced, and my Mom came into town, and our closest friends Steven and Candice came and hung with us. I remember that 30 hours is a long friggin time to wait for your first born LOL. I remember seeing nothing but hair (girl was born with SOOO much) for the 1st 20 minutes of her entrance in this world. I remember thinking, when the doctor grabbed the surgical scissors, “How cool!! The doc is going to cut a lock of hair for our baby book”….and then learning/watching what an episiotomy EXACTLY is…and being proud I didn’t pass out!!

I remember being the first set of arms to hold Ayanna when she came into this world. I remember, with such beaming pride, how when I said “Hi” to her, she actually opened her eyes to see me and smiled. All of that talking to her in Damary’s belly paid off. She wanted to see the face behind the voice. I remember the emergency that took place, just seconds later, as Damary hemorrhaged and I was holding Ayanna, scared she would never know her Mom, and how much she loved her. I remember the first night, not sleeping as I walked a groove in the floor between the nursery to see Ayanna (she had to be observed) and watching Damary sleep. I remember going to the chapel and crying, asking God to make them both better.

I remember the next morning when both Mami and Daughter were healthy, and excited to meet each other for longer than 30 seconds. I remember when my daredevil daughter’s first steps were in the bathtub while taking a bath (of course she wants to the first journey as difficult as possible lol). I remember her saying “Papi”, before she could say “Mami”. I remember how her first 2 Christmases, Damary and I overdid it with gifts (turns out she liked the ribbons and boxes more…who knew??)

I won’t write about every milestone I remember about Ayanna…that would take up so much time. But my point is my baby girl is growing up. I love the fact she never ask me why I still call her (the oldest) “my babygirl”!

I look at her and realize I want her to never think she can’t do something. I want her to realize the universe is her playground. Whenever she ask me, if she, or girls can do something, I never hesitate to tell her, she can do whatever she puts her mind to. The other day she told me she wants to be a “cooker” (her way of saying chef) and a basketball player. I told her, I would eat whatever she made, and cheer the loudest for her at every basketball game.

I know I can’t protect/shelter her forever. I do know I can make sure she charges into her life with positive self-esteem; positive, never quit attitude; respect for her self and others around her; and possibly the most important (selfishly speaking, of course), knowing she is loved by her Papi, unconditionally.

Happy Birthday Babygirl



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