Happy one year birthday, baby boy! I can’t believe that it’s already here. Last week you turned the big ONE and we all couldn’t be happier or more proud.
It has taken me over a week to write this to you because you keep me running all day long! You are one busy little guy. We are all breathing a big sigh of relief that you’ve actually made it this far, what with your crazy daredevil antics that you freak me out with all day long. I can turn around for 4 seconds and you will already have done one (but usually all) of the following: pushed the kitchen stool to the den to climb the bookshelves, eaten a handful of dog food, climbed on top of the table and squealed with delight, sneaked out the back door, eaten any foreign objects you can find on the floor, licked the trash can, lifted the toilet lid to explore inside, sorted the trash. And that’s just the first part of the morning. This list usually repeats itself about 3-4 times a day. So yeah, baby’s are cute, but maybe just not fail-proof.
We had a little celebration for you on your actual birthday with just our family. Your sister was delirious with excitement for you to open presents! and play! and sing the birthday song! and eat your cake! (which she helped make and decorate for you: blue frosting/purple sprinkles, natch.) You had an absolute blast with your cake, too. You couldn’t believe your fortune that we gave you a whole piece and you kept looking at us suspiciously like we would snatch it away at any moment. Naturally, you didn’t waste any time getting the goods in your mouth (but mostly on your face and lap. Thankful again that you are so washable.)
I really can’t believe that you’re already entering full-blown toddlerhood. You’re not quite walking yet, but you really want to. You push your walker all around the house trying to balance upright, or anything else that happens to be in front of you that you can grab onto (toddler chairs, stools, baskets, the dog). I think I’m actually in denial that the baby part of you is slowly slipping away, being replaced with a rambunctious and babbling little boy. A kid.
It was only just over a year ago that you were tucked safely inside me. Warm. Comforting. Huge. Ready to take on the world. And then there I was, walking, walking, walking trying to get you to come out and meet us, your anxious and adoring new family. You just didn’t want to come. It’s not that you didn’t like us yet. I think you were just so content to be with mama. To just hang out, you and me. That’s the way you still are now. We snuggle close and you sigh happily. Peaceful. You open your eyes and smirk up at me while you nurse, grateful and always amused to see me there. You grin at everyone who passes by with that insanely flirtatious and mischievous grin, but always look back to make sure I’m watching, that I’m always near. You cry when I have to leave you for any amount of time (oh the abandonment issues you one-year-olds deal with!), but once you are in my arms again all is right with the world. You are my boy. My sweet, laid-back little guy.
But it’s not just me that you love. You are so completely enamored with your big sister. She is your best friend and you are her little sidekick. You have no idea how much it warms my heart to watch you two begin to play together. There’s lots of grabbing and frustration still, but you guys are getting there. You’re figuring out the importance of this team. And sometimes I’ll look in the backseat of the car while I’m driving and see you two holding hands in your car seats or just making each other laugh and squeal with delight. This is impossibly cute. And loud. And also, did I mention LOUD? Yeah, you guys are loud together. There’s no other way to explain it, and I’m afraid there is no way to stop it either. But that’s fine with me. I cherish the silence of nap times, but I would never trade the noise and mess and dirty faces and perfect chaos you guys create for anything.
A year ago I had no idea what to expect. I was a veteran of raising a girl, but I knew nothing about boys. I had no idea how our family would change. Ian, you have transformed our family. Your giggles, your nonsensical babbling that makes complete sense to you, your lightening speed crawling (knees of steel!), your sweet, soft snores. All of it has rounded out our family in such a unique way. The photos above show how far you’ve come. The first one was taken the day after you were born. I was smelling your sweet baby smells. Savoring you. The photo below it was taken last week on your birthday. There I am, still savoring. Still painfully aware of how fast this time goes.
And there we are, one year ago. Meeting each other. Figuring each other out. We still are. And I love every minute of it. Happy birthday, big guy. I hope this next year is as full of fun adventures as the last!