Jubilee's First Birthday Fundraiser!

1 year. 12 months. 365 days. And hours and hours and hours. Hours of cuddles and hours of nursing. Hours of worrying and hushed prayers. Hours of giggles and singing and peek-a-boo. Hours of googling and messaging with other mothers (my mother!) around the whole world (oh the infinite wisdom from all the mamas!) Hours of diaper changes and bath time splashes. And so, so very many hours of lost sleep. =) I arrive at this one year mark feeling a rush of many emotions: love, joy, pride, relief (we kept you alive for a whole year!). But I think, most of all, I feel gratitude. I have so much to be grateful for. I had the luxury of having the exact birth I hoped for and received excellent attention by trained medical professionals during and directly following my babe’s delivery and her first year of life. I leaned heavily on the love and support of my spouse following Jubilee’s birth and all this last year. We brought our sweet little love bug from the hospital to our comfortable, stable, and safe home. We were gifted and passed down so many things from our loving community. I, to this day, have only bought our daughter one article of clothing. When Jubilee wasn’t gaining weight well, lactation consultant friends put aside their to- do lists to listen, encourage, instruct, and advise. When they say, “it takes a village”, it really is true. I am thankful for you all- for our village. Some of you I see every day and others only once or twice a year. Some of you offer wisdom, encouragement or “likes” on facebook and have yet to meet my sweet girl- but I know that you love her and you’re rooting for us and if I need you, you’d be here. No matter if our babes have play dates regularly, or you’ve yet to actually give my girl a squeeze- I’m beyond grateful for your love and support and, most of all, your comradery. Motherhood is a challenging and sometimes lonely road. Lots of intense physical and hormonal changes occur and there is quite suddenly a real live baby that requires pretty much constant attention and has one’s utmost devotion. It’s such a rollercoaster ride. Mark and I could not have walked this crazy road without you all.    

So, in honor of our Jubi girl’s 12 months we would be so honored if you chose to celebrate her life by supporting another new mama. I have been so very inspired by the work at Nurture Project International. These women (who are volunteers- 97% of resources are spent directly on programs) are amazing! They are helping the most vulnerable refugees from Iraq and Syria- pregnant women and mothers with young children. They provide nutritious food to pregnant and lactating women, as well as children from the age of 6 months- 24 months. They also provide food for children at risk of malnutrition from the ages of 2-5. They have lactation consultants who provide training for new moms and licensed midwives who offer support for pregnant women. They are providing lifesaving and imperative support for the most vulnerable- they are building up their own “village” for these homeless, motherless, resilient mothers to be- we would love for you to come alongside us and support them! If you were planning to buy Jubilee a present for her birthday or wish to celebrate her wonderful life in some way, we would love for you to donate $12 ( or 420 THB) to NPI (if you’re in BKK you can give to me and I’ll send one big donation, or donate directly- Jubilee does not need any presents. =)). $12 is the suggested amount, but you are welcome to give more/less as you desire.

**Mark and I took Jubi girl on a boat a few weeks back. It was a windy day and the seas were rough and once we were on I was immediately wondering what the heck we were doing. Jubilee got scared almost immediately and started crying and holding on to me as tight as possible. It was a horrible 40 minute ride. Later Mark and I both acknowledged how we’d thought of those mothers- the ones who risk everything for such a dangerous and scary ride to get their babies to safety. We thought of those pictures- of the parents and the kids clambering aboard the shore. The pictures of those who didn’t make it. Man- we live with/in so much privilege. I can’t imagine that reality with my precious girl. I can’t imagine a more heartbreaking risk as a parent. And then to arrive, with no home, no shelter, no food, no belongings. Oh, to be carrying life, heavy with the weight of all the responsibility you bear. To feel so sharply the absence of your mother. To ask strangers to welcome you in your most vulnerable state. So very thankful that there are women like those at NPI- to offer help and to show compassion.