Today you are two years old! It feels so incredibly perfect that today is both your birthday and Mother’s Day. A few days ago, your dad asked me what I wanted for Mother’s Day and I couldn’t come up with a single thing. I feel like the luckiest mother in the world almost every single day and all I really want is a lifetime with you.
This past month has been one of ups and downs. We celebrated Easter in Bakersfield, which you enjoyed tremendously, especially since grandma got a slide, which basically makes her house your favorite place ever. You also caught Hand, Foot and Mouth Disease, which was absolutely horrible and I would really like to forget that week altogether.
Yesterday we had your 2nd birthday party. The theme was Sesame Street and you had an incredibly good time. I literally didn’t see you for half the party because you were having so much fun playing with your cousins and friends that you could only be bothered to stop for half a second to eat. You laughed and smiled and had such a great time, and you were surrounded by friends and family who love you dearly. You are such a lucky boy to have so many people who love you so much.
This year has been just entirely incredible. I remember a year ago thinking you were SO big and so grown up, and now I look back and you were still so very much a baby. In the last year you learned how to walk, how to run, how to jump (mostly) and started speaking in (simple) sentences. You developed strong likes and dislikes and learned how to convey them in a variety of ways. You have truly made the transition from baby to boy- and you are an incredible little boy.
Your likes this month include: ketchup, mama, daddy (or “my daddy” as you call him), all your various “Ammas” and “Ampas,” Max the dog, the kitties (“Jep-a-go” especially), Finding Nemo, Bolt, Daniel Tiger, lining up everything you can find, slides (“suh-lide!”), your pacifiers (“pups!”), water in any context, washing your hands, balls, Lightning McQueen and Mater.
Your dislikes this month include: riding in your stroller, HFM disease, the pediatrician, Motrin, not being allowed to watch Finding Nemo all day long and transitioning from things that you want to do, to things that we want you to do.
There’s just something about you, Eli. You had a relatively lousy couple of weeks recently as you’ve come into the temperamental land of twohood a little early. One evening in particular, at a party for one of my coworkers, you were in a terrible mood. You threw sand (and had the sandbox taken away), you lost your mind when another kid wouldn’t give you a toy she had first and just were generally unhappy and loud and upset. The next day when I went to work, I had like 10 people come up to me and tell me how sweet and adorable you are. I actually laughed a little and apologized for your behavior because I was sort of embarrassed, but they were serious. They just thought you were the greatest kid. You just have this way, this charm, about you. Even when you’re on your worst behavior, people are still drawn to you.
I feel the same way. You test boundaries and you sometimes have frustrating days, but the sheer volume of love I carry for you is completely indescribable. Sometimes I have to actually stop myself from squeezing you and absolutely smothering you with love. You have given me the greatest 2 years of my life.
Watching you grow is the greatest privilege of my entire life, Eli. I truthfully did not completely understand my place in this world or my purpose in this life before you came along and you have changed who I am on every single level. I am a better person because of you and I want to be better every single day I’m with you. Raising you is both the easiest and the toughest thing I’ve ever done, but loving you has come easier than breathing. I feel like I’ve had you in my life forever, when really, it’s only been these 2 short years.
Happy birthday to you, my sweet boy. I cannot possibly tell you how much you are loved and how fortunate we feel to be your parents. We can’t wait to see what next year brings.