I'll have you know, it is the middle of August and I am just sitting down to write this letter. I've tried so many times to start, but I just felt like each time the words weren't on my heart, and I just couldn't get it right. This is a big one you know - you're a whole year old now! - and I didn't want to forget anything.
Our little family has had a tough road getting to where we are sweet boy. Colic, allergies, sleepless nights, unintentional co-sleeping, breast-milk intolerances - on and on it goes. But you know what made it all bearable, little one? You know what got us up in the mornings, excited to start our days and watch you grow?
The love. Oh man, the love.
You can't speak words yet, but...
I imagine sometimes that when you tug on my leggings [because let's face it, I'm always wearing leggingss] and holler at me, that it's code for "pick me up and cuddle me mama! I love you!"
I imagine that when your eyes light up, and you squeak and squeal across the floor when you hear daddy's truck after work, that it's code for "Yes! Daddy's home, I love him!"
I imagine that when you see your Grandmas and you duck your face and hide your huge smiles, that it's code for "Hey! I remember how much you love me, and MAN, I love you too!"
I never understood before you arrived why parents always talked about their kids all the time. I love children as much as the next person, but really! And then, you came along, and suddenly your dad and I GOT IT. Suddenly we were the parents talking about our kid all the time, we were the parents hoping someone would ask to see a picture, we were the parents who put our son to bed and then watched videos of him ten minutes later because we missed him already.
Right now you are absolutely in my favourite part of your babyhood journey - you have more personality than I know what to do with, and seeing it develop with each passing day is a blessing that we never take for granted. Watching the gears grind in your brain as you consider your options, recognize something, or make a new connection is absolutely fascinating.
I want to remember that when you are tired, you now grab your snuggly buddy through the crib rails and cuddle into him on the floor.
I want to remember the way you've started to purse your lips, sticking them WAY out and breathing heavily as you concentrate on something.
As crazy as it makes me, I want to remember when you fill your mouth up like a chipmunk and spit it all out, laughing at yourself because, obviously, you're hilarious.
To remember what it felt like to watch you take your first two steps all alone, so determined and brave. And the smile on your face when you fell, like, "hmmm, I need to try THAT again!"
To remember you playing catch with Lexi with the orange dog balls. More often than not they end up in your mouth, but sometimes you get a great roll going, and she just loves it.
That you learned how to kiss in the past month - where you lean into anyone you like, mouth wide open, hoping for a smooch. Fingers crossed that you continue to keep your little tongue tucked safely inside :)
That the boy who never stops smiles was so.serious.for this entire birthday party - until the Jeep got unwrapped, that is!
We have a long journey ahead of us. We are pretty sure you do in fact have a milk allergy, and time will tell how that pans out. We start you in day care this coming week, and while my heart is wrecked at the thought of leaving you, I'm also incredibly excited to watch you create friendships and master new skills.
I can already tell that you will grow to be a smart, adventurous and hilarious little boy. Here's to the next year, filled with new memories,new skills, more snuggles and a thousand and one laughs each month. Here's to you, kiddo.
So much love,