Once again, my apologies for this sentimental post, but this blog seems to be as good a place as any to pound out my thoughts regarding life, my children, and how fast life with my children seems to be going, so I’m writing a birthday letter to my son, who turned one yesterday. Feel free to skip the drivel and scroll down to the bottom, I’ll make it worth your while.
Happy Birthday, Little Man. I really can’t believe you’re a year already. A whole year of me and Dad being outnumbered. A year of chaos and confusion, much worse than before. A year of constant exhaustion, too little sex, and a life that often feels like it’s on the verge of unravelling before my sleepy, half closed eyes.
But if turmoil was the price to pay to add you to our family, it is a price I’d be willing to double. Kaelum, you have rounded out our family in a way I never dreamed possible. Before you were born, I knew life would get hectic and I knew I would love you, but I never knew how hectic life would get, or how much I would love you. I figured I’d empty out some real estate in my ol’ ticker for you, but I never anticipated just how awesome the human soul is, that from the moment you were born, I didn’t need to clear out a space in my heart for you, it just kinda grew right about the same time I held you to my chest, chord still attached and blue as a bottle of antifreeze.
Kaelum, you were loved so much so soon. Once you were born, your siblings came in to see you right away, oohing and aahing over your tiny button nose, your pouty swelled lips. They were never jealous, although I thought they should be. Here you were, a hedonistic little thing, screaming and crying and demanding attention, constantly taking up their mommy’s time, but all they wanted to do was hug you and kiss you and hold you. When you weren’t around, they would ask where you were. When you were around, they would stroke your hair and talk baby talk to you. Hayden nicknamed you “Little Buddy” and they both still call you that to this day.
There are some obvious disadvantages to being the youngest. Chances are, you won’t know your alphabet as early on as your siblings because I don’t have the time to sit down and teach you the way I did when I only had one or two little people to be a personal servant to. Your bedtime stories will probably be over your head for many years because they will pick them. You are smothered on a daily basis by kids who don’t quite understand personal space, gentle play, or the concept of listening to the non-verbal cues of a baby. All your clothes and baby gear are hand-me-downs and you’ll probably be stuck feeding and dressing yourself far sooner than your brother and sister. You’ll watch more TV, and the shows probably won’t be age-appropriate. You won’t have as much one-on-one time now that there are three of you to share our attention, and you will probably have to fight to be heard. But what you lack in these areas, you will get to make up in learning, playing, talking and just being with your siblings. They will teach you the things that I may not get to, they will give you attention when I cannot, and they will love you as I do, and always will. And for that, you are one lucky kid, because you will never be short on the most important commodity love.
You have challenged me this year, my little stinker. You turned your nose up at food for almost the first year of your life, causing me to be joined at the hip with you, feeding you every few hours day and night. You refused a bottle and a soother and sleep was something you took lightly. But when your face lights up at the first sign of music, when you clap and dance and do the actions, I forget that I’m running on one sputtering cylinder. You smile so much and so easily, and you laugh all the time. And these things are worth the sleepless nights, the less frequent sex (Dad might not agree so much), the fact that life feels like it’s on the verge of unravelling. I sigh in relief that the hard first year is behind us, but I grieve also, because you’ll never be a baby again. I guess that’s not entirely true – you’ll always be my baby.
I promised to make it worth your while, so here’s one for my lady readers:
Need I say more?
And if there happen to be any male readers out there:
What’s better than a broad with two volley balls fixing a car? And you even get to imagine that the horizontal hottie is your wife. Unless she’s terribly un-endowed like me. Then you have to imagine it’s your wife fixing the car while keeping her recently purchased cantaloupes safe inside her sweater. That’s what I call multi-tasking.