IMG_0409   It is another birthday week in our family, this time it’s Lexi’s turn. Lexi turns 11 on Monday. Though I was not there to tell about her birth and struggle she did have one. Ronnie and Pat have told me a lot about Lexi’s birth and early days. Becky went into labor but the doctors could not stop it. Ronnie explained it as rushing around and being very scared. Lexi was born at 28 weeks gestation and weighed in at 2lbs.  Though she arrived early she was born healthy and able to breathe on her own. Only assisted by a c-pap machine.  Her main hurdle’s were gaining weight, learning to suck, and monitoring her CO2 saturation. After several weeks in the Neo-Natal unit Lexi was finally released weighting in at 4lbs 2oz.

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I remember the first time I ever met Lexi it was almost 4 years ago to the date and Lexi had just turned 7 years old. We met while at our friends Jim and Cecilia’s house to watch a MSU basketball game. Lexi  was wearing a jean skirt with leggings and a pair of bedazzled high tops. She was full of energy and we both practiced back walk overs, splits and other various gymnastics moves in Jim’s basement.  I played with all the little girls in the basement,while the other adults watched the game. Every time I would try to watch the game for a moment Lexi would come and ask me to play with her.  After the party we went to the mall and to a movie with her dad and I also remember Lexi reaching up and holding my hand out of the blue. It was at this moment I remember thinking, it was going to be easy to love this little girl and so it began. The slow bond that one forms with a child that is not of your womb. The learning of each other, the trust that is formed, the love that follows.

Lexi in four short years has grown in so many ways not only the physical growth but also the emotional growth. Becoming a step sister on both sides of her family, going from being an only child for 8 years to having 5 step siblings learning to share not only parents but more  the struggle with toys and belongings. She has done a wonderful job with this and has formed wonderful bonds and friendships with everyone. She has also had her brothers births. Becky had Mason in December 2011 and Lexi seemed to be a natural at being a big sister. She loves her brother and talks all the time about the funny little things he does and never complains about anything dealing with Mason. She tells of how she would do anything to protect Mason and it truly touches my heart. I wish she would have had more bonding time with Elijah because I know what an amazing big sister she is.  Lexi is caring, and always worried about how I feel and if Stella is healthy. I can not wait until she is able to hold her sister and fall in love with her.

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I think when you are a step parent you always fear what the children are thinking and feeling. When I look at Lexi I do not fear this. I feel she has been extremely flexible, able to adapt easily and love freely. I know I was able to love her from that first day and I am glad that she has been able to do the same.

When I think of words that describe Lexi I think first of strong. She has been through a lot in her 11 years and has made it look easy. Her dad describes Lexi as resilient, and sweet, but also stubborn or the nicest person. He says she works her magical powers getting out of trouble, she knows how to work a room. But to him she is his miracle girl.  She is kind hearted and loves animals and her family.  She is beautiful and has a contagious laugh. She loves to be tickled and cuddled or have her back scratched. She could swim all day, and loves to draw. Lexi is a blessing and we can’t wait to see what her future will bring. Happy 11th birthday Lexi, we all love you.IMG_0473



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