Sunday, January 1, 2012

Happy 3rd Birthday, Nate!

Dear, sweet Nate...

I can't believe it's been 3 years since God placed you into our arms and challenged us to allow you into our hearts.  Our hearts broke in those first moments, weeks and months.  The picture of what we'd imagined for our lives had been shattered in an instant.  But, slowly, God picked up those pieces and showed us how they fit into a beautiful picture of love and grace.

Nate, you are...a true expression of joy, resilient, patient, the best cuddler I've ever known, pure, loyal, adventurous, expressive, are LOVE.

I have learned so much from you.  I have gained a deeper understanding of what it means to love.  I have learned a new level of patience.  I have learned to rely on God and recognize that he planned every step of your life (sorry, I struggle with this one from time to time, but I'm getting better).  You have taught me a new level of compassion and understanding for others.

My frustrations with your extra needs and numerous appointments with therapists and doctors are FAR outweighed by my deep, deep love for you - who you are NOW and who you will become.  You are amazing to me!  Thank you for being one I can come to when I need to feel God's love in flesh.  You wrap your little monkey arms around me and squeeze me just the way you know I need it.

Nate, I am proud to call you my son.  It's hard to believe I hid you from others in those first few months of your life.  If I could now, I would carry you on my shoulders everywhere we go and shout, "He is mine!  He is amazing!  God loved me so much He gave me this precious boy!".

Happy Birthday, Monkey!!!


  1. Dani, your words melt my heart and surely God's as well. You have been such a faithful mom and woman during these past 3 years. I admire your courage and your perseverance more than you know. My love to you today and to Nate....

  2. Wow. What an amazing journey you four are on together. The joy and commitment ... All a picture of Christ's love for us (and not only some future, better version of us). Graters are grateful to know Nate!

    (Heidi wanted to draw Nate a picture... Emailing it over now.)

  3. Happy happy birthday Nate!! We love you so much -- you bring light to every room and being joy and smiles to so many people! Keep shining, buddy!
    Your mommy and daddy are pretty special too! :)
    The Pattersons

  4. Love this blogpost! I heard that Nate had a fabulous first day at Sunset Preschool! I am looking forward to hearing about his intriguing journey in life. :-)

  5. Such a BIG birthday. Happy, Happy Birthday to your sweet boy.