A Letter to my Not-Quite-One-Year-Oldby Elizabeth MacDonald
Baby. Sweet, Sweet Baby, You have only hours left until you turn an entire year old. How has the time gone by so quickly? How have we already had 8,756 hours together? How have the moments and milestones added up to today? Your sweet little toes are tucked under my ribs, and your little cheeks are snuggled into my side. You must be dreaming about nursing because you alternate smiles and suckling while you sleep. Oh, those sweet little lips, how I could kiss them again and again. The day we learned that you would be ours brought emotions I had never experienced. After losing a baby before you, my heart felt as if it may explode for you. I treasured every second that I had you growing within me, treating it as though you could be gone tomorrow. Actually, I’m trying to still do this. Life is such a blessing, and I do not want to take any of it for granted. When I heard your heart beating, I had to save those magical sounds.
I had to hear them over and over again to prove that you were real. Your stuffed fox holds that precious recording and it still gives me comfort. When we found out you were a boy, my emotions again drastically shifted. I experienced heartache because I thought I wanted a girl, but how wrong I was young son. YOU were the one I was meant to have; you are the one who fills my heart. We waited as you grew, trying out names and taking classes. And then you were here. You were this tiny 6lb bundle with no instruction manual. We didn’t sleep for days because we watched you breathe all night. You were just too precious to turn away from. That first month was a blur. So were the next three. You loved the bath tub, started to giggle, and rolled over with ease. These little things made us more proud than we had ever been in our lives. The months continued to fall from the calendar. You crawled, cried, stumbled, and walked. You ate foods and nursed, gave kisses, and played peek-a-boo. And now we are here, crossing off day 364 – rounding out your first trip around the sun.
I wish you so much happiness throughout your (long) life that it brings tears to my eyes. I promise to allow you to be whomever you truly are – and aid you in any way toward pursuing your dreams. You will make so many mistakes, and so will I. I promise to apologize throughout those mistakes and always work toward being better for you – and for me. I know that we have years of sports, and dress-up, hormones, and dating ahead of us…. BUT not today. No, not tomorrow either. I am learning just how fast this whole childhood is going to disappear and I want to live it with you, at your pace. I will not rush you into things, or dream too far into the future. I will walk barefoot on the grass with you; I will take bubble baths and let you splash everywhere. But today, in this moment, I will cry the sweetest tears as I see how you have grown; I will try to capture this moment to remember forever. My sweetest love, I will always be here to hold you. I will rock you as long as you allow. I will always worry, but will also support you. My love will never falter or drift, for you, my little one, are a part of my heart.
Happiest of Birthdays. Love, Mommy