Wednesday, September 14, 2016

To the one who is growing up faster...

It's your birthday tomorrow.

Everyone in the house will make more of a fuss over you than they already do, and you'll drink in every ounce of attention more than you already do.

It's hard to believe that there was ever a time when you weren't here. Though you're still so fresh and new, it seems that you've always been here, a part of this family.

I certainly didn't think we'd ever meet, you and I. I longed for the day that I'd have one last chance to do it all over again, but there was a part of me that let go of the hope that it would ever happen.

A bigger part held on to the hope.



Even when that hope didn't make much sense, I held on anyway.

And then one day, as though according to some script hidden and secret, you arrived.

Had you been a little girl, your middle name would have been Grace.

For reasons.

So many reasons.

Instead, here you are, your middle name taken from my father's name. You and he never had the chance to meet in this life, but I have a feeling you'd have gotten on splendidly, the two of you.

There's a devilish naughtiness to your smirk, a coyness to your demeanor, an excitement at new experiences that have so often reminded me of him. Maybe you didn't need to meet him in this life. Maybe you met somewhere else in the realms of the universe that make no sense to those of us here.

Maybe.

I just know that I look at you and I see him far too often for it to be mere genetic coincidence.

You're in a hurry these days to grow up. Faster, stronger, bigger. You see all your siblings and you want so desperately to keep up with them all.

Until you want to crawl up in my lap and rest your little head on my chest.


Part of having done this as many times as I have is that I know what to hang on to longer with you. I know what I'm going to miss. I know that I'll read all the stories you could ever want to listen to and I'll rock you in the chair for as long as you want. I know that someday you won't wake up in the middle of the night anymore wanting me. I know. There's a bittersweetness to it all now, the older you get, the more of those nights you sleep restfully without interruption.

All the rest of the time, there are other people and other things and other needs that need me, but in the small hours of the night, it's just you and me and your little fingers wrapped around mine.

If there was a way to hit pause on life, to keep a moment just so for all of eternity, that's when I would press it.

If.

There isn't.


I know that with absolute certainty.

Life doesn't cooperate with the time frames we would elect in any circumstance, least of all with children.

I can't keep you little no matter how hard I might try, and so I won't.

I'll embrace this new trip around the sun of yours for the journey it is, consider myself lucky for the chance to accompany you.

Never stop being amazed at the beauty in the world.
Sometime in the next few days, there will be a cake and balloons and that song your siblings so often sing to other people will be sang just to you.

It will all be for you.

They really do adore you, those brothers and sisters of yours.

You helped them, you know.

You helped them learn patience.

You helped them learn to appreciate how relentlessly time marches forward.

You helped them learn to slow down, get back on the floor, color.

You remind us all to play.

You remind us all to seek out joy, to witness the beauty in the world, to be amazed and excited about how awesome this world really is, and we get to watch you see it all for the first time.

You helped them be better people, just by being here.



You make me a better person. You challenge me. You make me laugh. You wear me out. You have helped me heal and grow as a woman, as a mother, as a person.

I can't wait to see who you become.

Thanks for completing our family, sweet boy.

I love you.

Happy birthday baby,
Mama

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