Dear Theo: SIX


Dear Theo,

I haven’t slowed down enough to read through the letters I’ve written you on your first five birthdays, but I can guess that I am feeling a lot of the same sentiments today. Wondering where the time has gone. Thinking that it feels like just a blink from the day you were born until now. Reflecting on how much you’ve grown in every way over the past year. Remembering all the fun we’ve had together as the months have flown by.

You’ve nearly completed Kindergarten. Any reservations or fears I had for you melted away shortly after you started elementary school last July. You love to learn and it turns out that you’re really good at it. I know it’s just who you are, but I am so unbelievably proud of what a good student you have become. I love listening to you read to me. I love watching you solve problems, follow directions, and concentrate so that you can accomplish your goals.

You’re getting better about helping out around the house. Clearing your spot after you eat, taking your dirty clothes to the laundry chute, and helping me out with little tasks when I need assistance. You love cooking with me and doing crafts together. You love coloring and I love it when you color and draw things for me. You should see my desk – it is an art gallery of yours and Dexter’s work.

You’re getting so tall. Wearing a size 6 in just about everything. You still have medium to dark brown hair and big, bright brown eyes. You still refuse to ride a bike and do not want anything to do with organized sports, but you do seem to love Ninja Gym so far, after just about 2 months. You’ve learned to play Mario Bros. on the Wii and I’m surprised at how quickly you and your brother have learned how to control the remotes and your characters. Playing video games with your dad is one of your favorite hobbies.

You’re still a good eater – just a little pickier than you used to be. You almost always clean your plate so that you can get a piece of candy. You and I both have a giant sweet tooth! You and your little brother have been getting along so well. You two truly are best friends and you have no idea how much I love to hear you call him “bud” or “Dexy.”  The other day you were both putting on your shoes to go outside and I overheard Dexter say”Theo, do you love me? Because I love you. Do you love me Theo?” You said “yeah, Dex” and continued talking, changing the subject. You looked up at me with a sheepish grin on your face. As embarrassed as you might feel and as much as you may not want to admit it, you know it’s true, and you knew it would melt my heart to hear you say that. Thank you, Theo. Thank you for being sweet and for not making a joke out of it when your brother is looking for that reassurance from you. I hope you will always be there for each other.

You lost your first tooth a couple weeks ago and you were thrilled to find out that the tooth fairy had paid you a visit. Now you’ve got another one that’s about to fall out. You were so proud of yourself for pulling that thing out, and I was glad that I didn’t have to do it myself! You still love Legos. You still have your favorite blankets and stuffed animals. You’re getting older, but you’re still little. You still hug and kiss me in front of your friends and I will cherish every one of those hugs and kisses that I get. You still love bedtime stories and extra hugs and kisses before you fall asleep. You wake up around 630am every day….oh Theo. Please start sleeping in before you turn 7! You love watching PBS Kids in the mornings before school. You cheer for the bad guy and love scary and creepy things, whether it’s villains in Disney movies or Halloween decorations at Lowes.

You have a mean streak a mile wide but you make up for it with the kind things you say and do. A couple weeks ago I was handing out snacks, preparing water bottles and looking for your shirts for Ninja Gym. I noticed that you’d both opened your own granola bars and fake pouted, saying “what? You don’t need me anymore? Gah – you guys are so grown up!” You said “Mama, we’ll always need you in SOME way,” and that did me in. I put down everything I was multi-tasking and ran around the breakfast bar to give you a big hug and kiss. There was that sheepish grin again – you knew the exact right words to say and the exact right time. I needed to hear that . You also know the exact wrong words to say sometimes! I hope you make good choices with your words – they are so powerful.

I could really go on and on about how wonderful you are and all the things I love about you. I wish I could pause time and live in this world for a while longer, but I can’t. You will keep growing and changing and those times will be fantastic too. I hope you stay healthy, curious, adventurous, and funny. I hope you reach past your comfort zone and try things that make you nervous. I hope you always love to learn. I hope you’re a good friend. I hope you have a friend who’s just as good to you. You deserve everything good.

I love you so much!

happy birthday Theo.