Before you were born, people would tell me to cherish all the little moments, because they will go away in a flash. I didn’t understand it until today- your 1st birthday.
See, in the beginning, it didn’t feel like the time was flying by. You woke us up every 2-3 hours with your little high-pitched cries. You were hungry. You needed to be changed. Or you just knew mom couldn’t resist a few more snuggles. You were an exhausting little bugger. We dreamed about the day you’d let us sleep through the night. We cheered as you rolled over on your back for the first time. We pushed you to talk, to crawl, to feed yourself. Your dad and I love watching your milestones. But as we pushed you to grow into this sweet little toddler, I realized those snuggles were gone.
You no longer want to take naps on mommy’s chest. Heck, I can’t even get you to sit still on my lap for three pages of a book. You’re too excited exploring the world around you.
You are no longer my baby. You’re a boy now.
Somewhere in the last year you developed a personality. You’re sweet. You’re kind-hearted. You’re mischievous. You pretend not to understand the word “no”, but when I say it, you look at me with his huge grin and do it anyways.
You have your own opinions now. And they’re getting stronger by the day. You love blueberries and pancakes. You hate anything green, especially peas. You won’t even let mom feed you from a spoon anymore. You’re too hardheaded and independent for that. You’re probably the only little boy who gave up the pacifier on his own. You’re too big for that too.
I miss the days when you wouldn’t let me put you down. I used to think how wonderful it would be to have my arms free so I could vacuum or wash the dishes. Now you won’t even let me carry you. I wish I could tell myself those dishes could wait another day.
Somewhere between the 3am feedings and now, you became a boy.
I say that with part sadness and part happiness. Each day I spend with you gets better and better. You can say “mama” and “dada”. You’re right on the verge of taking your first steps. You’ve learned to go down the slide by yourself. The best part, you sleep through the night and take two naps a day!
I can’t wait to watch you learn to throw a baseball. Or mimic your dad as you develop a forehand. Or watch you master the perfect spiral from your grandpa. But then again, maybe I can wait.
This past year has taught your momma two things.
1. The love of a child is beyond anything you’ll ever understand. 2. My time with you is flying by. I know the years will just get shorter and shorter. There will be a day very soon when you won’t need to hold my hand as you walk. You won’t want mommy give you kisses in public. You certainly won’t be crying “mama” from your crib. I guarantee there will be a day you’re embarrassed your mom ever posted this letter in public.
So until that time comes, those dirty dishes and cluttered floors can wait. I want to enjoy every minute you still need me.
I love you Jace.