So, now you are a year old. This past year has been the most amazing of my life. What a blessing it has been to watch you grow and learn and develop into this little person that makes my heart feel like bursting every single day.
From the moment I first held you in my arms I knew my life would never be the same. And it isn't. Everything has been changed, and as I am reflecting back on how the last year has molded and shaped me, my lifestyle and my relationships I don't think I would change any of it back. I feel as though I have learned and grown right along with you. Being a mom has taught me true sacrifice, selflessness, joy, and how to play again.
I remember when we first got you home from the hospital. Your dad and I looked at each other and started wishing right away that your Grandma was there to help us. It was hard work for those first few weeks and months as you seemed to be a bundle of never ending need, from nursing to sleeping to your incessant desire to constantly be in someones arms. Looking back I remember that I was frustrated at times and there were days when all I wanted was to be able to put you down for 10 minutes together so I could rest, but those feelings have been replaced by beautiful memories of long days spent on the couch together, cozy and inseparable, when I could ignore the housework and the cooking because you were a newborn and I was a new mom and that was allowed.
These days you are more and more active and energetic and I am getting a clearer picture of what your personality is like. You are so curious and at times very serious as you explore the world around you. No matter how many times you have been through the house, you still manage to find something new to discover, and I am discovering all these things with you. You have reminded me of how interesting measuring cups, pot lids, Q-tips, toilet paper, socks and coasters really are.
I worried for a long time that you were very solemn and for most of the past year your father and I have gone out of our way to coax smiles and the occasional laugh out of you. But now you have decided that smiling and laughing are your thing and you do them non-stop. I think you just had to learn more about the world before deciding there were sufficient reasons to express happiness and joy every day. Or perhaps you just had to get old enough to be able to appreciate how funny your parents truly are. Our house has never been filled with so much laughter as it is these days.
I am thankful for so many things over this past year. I am thankful that I held you all the time when you were little. I am thankful that you chose to sleep in bed with us, and that you still spend part of the night co-sleeping with me. I am thankful that I am home with you for most of the time so that I am not missing the joy of watching you grow and change every day. I am thankful for every time I chose to wear you in the sling close to my heart instead of letting you ride in a stroller or cart. Now that you are getting so big and want to be more independent, I miss it. I am thankful that I did not chose to wean you by 1 year old. You are still so little and I can't bear to lose the excuse to cuddle with you for long periods of time several times each day. I am thankful that you are strong and healthy and fearless, and that you move and climb and yell just the way a little boy should.
This time is going so quickly and I can see clearly that you will be grown before I am ready. I am praying every day that God would watch over you as you grow and that he will lead and guide you throughout your life. There is so much that I want to teach you, but I know that you have so much to teach me too. This next year is going to be full of discovery, exploration, learning and connecting as a family. I can't wait to see what you become. Happy Birthday little one. Love, Mom.