My precious baby boy,
Exactly one year ago today you made your presence known, by interrupting my yoga class and barreling into the world with eyes wide-open.
It was fast & furious, which as it turns out is how you roll. And, while I feared I’d never walk the same again – I adored you from the start. You with your red squishy body, ravenous appetite, and impressive vocal abilities.
I remember the moment I found out I was pregnant with you. We were living in Virginia and it was your brothers first birthday, of all days. I had just finished a morning run and I sat on the edge of the bathroom tub in disbelief. Once the initial panic wore off and reality set in, my insecure feelings seeped their way into my heart…
I was worried I wouldn’t have the capacity to love another child. That maybe in my incredibly flawed heart, I couldn’t.
As it turns out, I surprised myself.
With your brother, I learned the true meaning of unconditional love. It was following his birth that I began to break down the protective walls I had built to keep my heart safe, and I quickly learned that the risk of being vulnerable is far less than the reward.
LOVE is the reward.
I’m sure for many parents, the first child takes them all the way there, to complete immersion in love & vulnerability; but for me, it happened the moment you were born. I didn’t know then how guarded I still was, and I had no idea that soon my heart would be completely exposed.
I didn’t realize what having a second child would teach me once I fully invited love in. Because until you, I was still rigid, fearful, and handled being a mom like a business.
Maybe it was easier because I had been there before, and I no longer wore the “new mom” badge; or maybe I soaked up the time differently because I knew I wouldn’t be having more babies. (Or maybe I was just too damn tired.)
Regardless, adding you to the mix rocked my world and forced me to feel all kinds of things I had pushed away for so long.
I’m afraid, always anxious, and so incredibly vulnerable, but as odd as it may sound I’m also relaxed, at ease and completely full. My heart is full.
Being filled with the kind of love a child brings, makes you afraid to ever lose it. I never knew that exposing my insecurities, letting go of perfection, and loving you (and your brother) with every ounce of my being could be so f-ing scary and so amazingly freeing all at the same time.
You taught me to hug a little tighter, break from the busyness to snuggle more, and love without abandon.
I love the way you look at your brother, with both affection and admiration. I love the way you snuggle into child’s pose and rest on my chest, or when you get bashful and tuck your head right in the crook of my neck. The way you squeal excitedly while waving your arms when someone walks in the room. The way your hair has a stubborn cowlick in the front, no matter which way it’s brushed. The way you forcefully remove (and throw) your socks after they’ve just been put on. And, I love the way you curiously explore the world like a bear on the hunt for food.
You are the perfect blend of silly and determined; shy and affectionate; stubborn and gentle. The joy in your heart and love in your soul is ever present, and I can only hope they continue to grow with you.
I love you, Bubba.