All for ONE

It’s been 365 happy days since I became a momma for the fifth time. I spent today snapping birthday pics (including the one above while waiting for Kneaders cupcakes), cuddling my four-toothed wonder and getting choked up thinking about how a year ago I looked like this.Luckily this was the last time my bump bumped my MacBook Pro.The next morning my sleep ended abruptly when my water broke  — which led to a movie-like script of me waking up my bewildered husband with the good news. Lola Fern made her debut that afternoon (March 11, 2012) after I abandoned my plans for natural childbirth but held onto my vow to soak up every minute.My other four children came racing down the hospital hall to greet their yet-to-be-officially-named sibling. I could hear Hailey dramatically leading the pack, which was appropriate since her dream nine months previously about a baby sister coincided with my experience predicting the same outcome. This was our baby girl, our Lola Fern.Twelve months later, my oldest and youngest daughters — who are 12 years apart — have a year of memories and laughs under their matching belts.Lola’s life is full of siblings, basketball games, naps in the car and time at the office — she headed back to work when she was only 8 days old. The staff gathered to welcome our new mascot, and I got emotional watching my friends fall in love with my headliner.A year later, they still enjoy her even though she’s a wrecking ball when it comes to post-it pads and rechargeable camera batteries.Lola has spent very little time in a quiet house being glided to sleep. She has flown to California and to Phoenix. She has slept nearby during BusinessQ roundtables. She has posed for her magazine debut and previewed every layout from her lapside view. Being a Bennett baby in 2013 is a full-time job in imperfect circumstances. Tonight, her two teenage siblings planned Instagram posts about their baby sister’s birthday. I love that my children — spanning nearly 15 years — are proud to share a last name and a first birthday with a baby whose first words were “thank you.” I’m thankful I gave life to these five. But more importantly they give life to my days and meaning to my minutes. They give me plenty to write about and no time to do it.However, I did manage to write a song for Lola during our first night together when I stared in wonder at my 8 pounds and 14 ounces of miracle. (It was my feeble attempt to create a new Lola tune to edge out the Barry Manilow number and the Broadway hit about whatever Lola wants, Lola gets … )”Who are you? You’re my Lola Fern. Who are you? You’ve got lots to learn. Who are you? You’re from up above. Who are you? You came full of love. Who are you? You’re my baby girl. Who are you? You’ve changed my world. Who are you? Lo ….. la ….. Fern …” (The song’s ending still needs a little work.) Lola has reminded me who I am — a mother with a full heart and full hands. While I’ve been writing this post, she talked me into retrieving her from the crib and snuggling her while typing. It’s a position the two of us have mastered in the past 12 months. After all, we’re all for ONE.