A year and some weeks ago, I wrote you a letter. You were new and fresh and itsy bitsy, and everything about you charmed us. While your arms and legs were filling my belly, a love for you was filling my heart - and well, that love exploded the day you came. Once, I heard a mom say having a baby was like having part of your heart split off to walk around outside of you. I'd say that's about right. You've carried a piece of me around with you for nearly 400 days now. From rolling over to sitting up to crawling like a maniac to the two faltering steps you've lately managed, my heart's gone with you, all the way.
In a classic case of chest-bursting parental pride, your Daddy and I are convinced you are the cleverest baby yet. You aren't regularly using words (although you have said mama, dada, more, and go) but you respond to questions with a yes bob or a no shake, and you can fetch things for us that we ask you to get. You like to point to our facial features and then yours, waiting each time for us to say what it is. "Nose." "Mouth." "Eyes." In one of the books we read you, the daddy bunny tells his son he loves him as high as he can reach, and when we get to that line, you stretch both your hands above your head.
Your skin is so soft I can still hardly believe it, even after a year of touching your chubby thighs and kissing your cheeks. You love the spray of the water hose, and when it rains, you stand at the screen door and cry to go out. You stare strangers down with your big brown eyes and rarely proffer a smile at first meeting. You can spot my purse from anywhere in the house and yank it down to the floor by its strap, pulling the contents out one by one. You love to be chased up the stairs. You crawl to your closet and yell for me until I come, and then you show me that you want to wear your shoes.
What a beautiful year it's been. I love you, my sweetness. And I forever and always will.