Sophie’s Story: Happy Birthday, Sweet Butterfly

Today is my sweet Sophie’s 5th birthday! For her birthday this year, Sophie’s grandparents gave her a butterfly themed birthday gift, from a craft to a sweet twirly dress. Her grandma commented, “A beautiful butterfly… she has come out of her chrysalis this year.” I was struck by such a beautiful and perfect symbol for Sophie’s year. Although many days I have faced frustrations and discouragement with her, in reflecting on her year as a whole, I can see so clearly that her journey this past year has been beautiful.

When she turned 4, Sophie’s speech had begun exploding, but mostly at home. She was very shy around everyone else. Over this year, we have seen her emerge from her shell, gaining confidence to speak to others outside our home, and learning sass and spunk in her speech. Speaking fully in complex sentences now, some of Sophie’s favorite things to say these days include “I know what I’m doing, Mommy,” and “Don’t tell me what to do, Micah,” as well as “I’m just joking!” When I called her the “birthday girl” recently, she replied, “No, I’m not the birthday girl. I’m the birthday lady!” Spunky and sassy to be sure!

This Sunday as we came into church, Sophie saw her best little buddy, Isabella. She ran up and greeted her with a hug and said, “Hi, friend.” A year ago, she was only beginning to emerge from her shell; she would have been too shy for such a greeting. Our friends and family were lucky to get a wave a year ago, but now we see moments like this everyday.

This tiny gift which graced our lives 5 years ago has taught me so much. My mother often says that a woman’s true education begins when she becomes a mother. In many ways this is true for me. My journey with Sophie has developed in me a grit, a determination, a courage that I didn’t possess before her. I have stared bad news in the face and chosen to trust God anyways. I have faced discouragement and fear but kept walking forward in faith. I have watched my sweet girl show more determination and perseverance than many adults I know. As Sophie turns 5, we still face discouragement, bad news, fears, but we have also seen our beautiful butterfly emerging from her chrysalis. It has been breathtaking watching our sweet butterfly emerge and show the world her beautiful colors this year.

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One Response to Sophie’s Story: Happy Birthday, Sweet Butterfly

  1. Bonnie

    Awwwww! So special! Had not read this yet when I posted that comment to you at FB about God showing me something the night I found out i had cancer, using a butterfly. So after reading this I just had to share with you a tiny bit more because you said some things that are so like what God showed me. He gave me a sort of vision where I saw a caterpillar hurrying along. Then the caterpillar in the chrysalis and then a beautiful yellow and blue butterfly emerged and flying high. He seemed to say, almost audibly it seemed, addressing me by name, that I had been like this caterpillar, running to and fro but not running toward Him. He was putting me in the chrysalis of cancer for a year so that He could form me into this beautiful twirling butterfly. While I have not felt much like a butterfly since, I hold onto that promise, that He is, indeed, making me into that butterfly and will be until I reach Heaven. Since that night He has certainly been forming and shaping me and more real to me than ever before, so I know that butterfly is on its way….. As you shared about this past year and Sophie it seemed like she is breaking free from a chrysalis of a similar sort–something physical that was hindering her life. And now she is breaking free from that! How appropriate that you guys did a butterfly themed b-day party for her! I sure hope I will get to meet her before she is COMPLETELY grown up. By the way, I also needed to write you to check on your address because I’m making up a list for Anna for our friends and family and want to invite you guys to their wedding. I know it would be quite a trip and difficult with the kids and all, let alone a new baby (can’t remember right off when your due date is, but am thinking you certainly will have had him/her by then!). But thought MAYBE it just MIGHT work out, since your parents are invited (of course!) and David is a groomsmen and Pat and Mark are helping with decorations. So maybe you could make the trip up here a family affair! Anyways….. I was pretty positive the address in the church directory is the right one but wanted to make sure youguys are still at 519 E. Allen St. I’m realizing just now that this is probably a really stupid place to be asking you this question, but since I was on here writing to you anyway, I just decided to take care of it at the same time. Sorry….. :/ Hope you are feeling decently and that Andrew is content at his new job. Thank you again for sharing your story about Sophie and thank you also for taking time to read my above story, too! Hope I did not take you away from other important business you needed to attend to! I so appreciate your interest in me! Love, Bonnie