Late in the afternoon, one cold December day, back in 2011, Daddy and I finally got to meet you for the first time. Up until that day, I could only imagine what you would look like. For months, images of your face circled my mind. Would you be tall? Would you have lots of hair? Would it be dark or blond? What would we name you? Would you like your name, is it cool enough for the awesome kid you’d grow up to be? Up until that point, I had only felt you move–wiggling and hiccuping. I’d also seen your features via a black and white ultrasound photo. You were just this growing “baby A” and we couldn’t wait to be your parents.
You asked me tonight, as I tucked you in and sang your nighttime songs, for the last time as a 6-year-old, to tell you about the day you were born. So I did, as I have done many nights and birthdays before. Daddy showed you pictures of your first minutes of life, you asked me if I was scared. As your parent, I sincerely try not to lie to you. I’d rather be honest and teach you than to be dishonest and come up with a creative tale. So I said, “Yes.” I was scared, and that was the truth.
Truth be told, I am still scared. Everyday. I think that goes with being a parent, being your Mom.
You are insanely smart–like, in a year, you will far surpass my sub-par math skills. Okay, I’m lying–you already have. Jokes, aside, the scared, the worry in me only changes. You’re about a head shy of being taller than me. How will I still pick you up and carry you when you fall? How will I teach you, when you actually surpass my skill level in math? So, yes, little man I was scared! I was scared, I wouldn’t feed you enough, I was scared I would feed you too much, I was scared you’d get hurt, that you wouldn’t sleep enough, I was scared I wouldn’t be able to help you when you caught a cold. I was scared you’d poop in the bath or puke on me (you’ve saved all those joyous nights for daddy) I was scared I’d miss your “firsts.” I am still scared, 7 years later– every day.
I’m not naive, I know that being scared as a parent kinda comes with the job–and I’m certainly 100% on board for the challenge but can we slow down a little? I went to sleep yesterday with an infant in my arms, you fit between my hand and my elbow. I was able to cradle you against my body with one had. I blinked and life, your life, our lives fast forwarded 2,556 days. You’re 7.
Always, know my little man, that Daddy and I will always be scared–but we’ll learn to adapt as you get bigger. Continue to embrace and love reading, practice spelling, excel in math–you certainly are smarter than I could have ever imagined you’d be at 7. Keep working on your stickhandling, hockey positioning and love for skating and playing your favorite game, hockey. Keep running, climbing and testing limits. I love that you and daddy have a mutual love for every sport, video games and ridiculous shows on the history channel. I love that you still, want to snuggle with me every morning and read and sing together every night. Continue to test what you can do–continue to scare daddy and I. It’s what kids do best and I wouldn’t have it any other way.
Happy Birthday, Little Man…You may not be getting a million dollars, a puppy, a cell phone or a computer for your birthday, but Daddy and I will give you everything else in the world that you could ever wish for.