It was right around Halloween of 2009 when we found out you were a boy. Somehow, I knew it before the ultrasound tech told us. From that moment on, we started planning for our little boy’s arrival, not knowing where this path would take us.
On March 8, 2010, you came into our world and life has never been the same. It was the day you made me a mother. When I saw your face, I knew the name we picked out for you was perfect. How is it possible that you just looked like a little Theo at birth? After saying your name for several months, it was nice to put a face with the name and it felt entirely natural.
Here we are three years later, and I say your name countless times a day. Sometimes out of love, sometimes out of frustration. Most likely, out of admiration when I’m talking about you to someone else, which I do a lot. Anyone who knows me knows that my family comes first.
You’ve got a stubborn streak that I hear rivals your dad’s when he was young. You are increasingly independent and can carry on a conversation like you’re grown. You love cartoons and movies and would be just fine if we said you could do nothing but watch them for the rest of your life. Too bad life’s full of disappointments, kid.
Even through the challenges, I have loved having you at 2. We have had a busy, fun year and you have grown in so many ways. I realize all too well that you will never be this small again. We continue traveling furiously onward like a speeding train. You’re funny. You’re sweet. You’re clever. I love hearing the things that you come up with. You are discovering ways to manipulate situations. You’re reasoning. You’re thinking about options and alternatives before you speak sometimes. It’s amazing to observe you developing this way. Sometimes I don’t know if I’m teaching you or if you’re teaching me.
You sleep in your own big boy bed. You wear underwears (except when you’re asleep). You don’t call them “underwears” anymore but I wish you did. You lose little pieces of your baby self every day. I never correct you when you say cute things because I know you’ll correct yourself soon enough. You’re adorable beyond words. You make me swoon. Just this week, you asked me to snuggle up with you early in the morning before you were ready to get out of bed. I needed to go shower and when I tried to slip quietly out of your bed after you closed your eyes again, you put your hand on my forearm and whispered “I don’t want you to go, mama.” Melted my heart. You won. I stayed for a little while longer, just rubbing your back, smelling your hair, and kissing your head. I know these moments with you are fleeting.
You are a big brother. You are not always nice to your little brother, but you always love him. Seeing your face light up as you’re playing together makes me smile. I love watching you together. I love that you understand him when I don’t. I love that you can calm him down when he’s upset. I love that you two are starting to chat and have your own little conversations. You are brothers. I hope you’ll always be close.
You are three. Before you’re four, you will ride in an airplane. You’ll visit Walt Disney World. You’ll have another Christmas at our home. We’ll celebrate Dexter’s 2nd birthday. We’ll spend time with family and friends like we do every year. I don’t know what else to expect for this year, but I know it will be amazing… I know that I’ll be writing that you’re four in the blink of an eye. I don’t want to miss it but I’m excited to grow as your mother as you grow into this little man.
You are so loved, son. So, so loved. You have grandparents, aunts, uncles, cousins, and countless other friends and relatives that love you. You don’t even realize how beautiful that is or how special you are. I am humbled by the privilege and responsibility I was given to be your mother and raise you well. I hope you think I’m doing fine.
I love you babe. Happy, happy, happy birthday.