Today is your first birthday!!! I can’t believe it has been a year since you came into our lives. Time has flown by. I was scared to death when we found out that your mom was pregnant. I was scared to death when they took you from us right after your birth. I was scared to death at the thought of being 100% completely responsible for another person, but after a year, I can say with certainty that you are an amazing blessing from God. I thought I knew how much my parents loved me until we welcomed you into this world. Over the last year you have learned to roll over, sit up, crawl, walk, run (with shades of grey) and say a couple of words. No dirty words so far, but not because of a lack of effort on my part. Each step has been an amazing experience for your mom and me and we look forward to all the stages of your life. Part of me wants you to stop growing up so that you can be our little boy forever and part of me wants you to hurry and grow up a bit so that I can teach you how to rope, work cows, build stuff, shoot a free throw, and execute a box squat. Your mom and I are blessed beyond words to have you in our life. I can’t imagine how our life would be without you in it. Never question how much your family loves and cares about you. Always know and love the lord. Never feel sorry for yourself. Never make excuses. Always take responsibility for your words and actions. Show toughness when toughness is needed. If something is worth doing, it’s worth giving 100%. Don’t ever give less than your best effort. MAKE EACH DAY YOUR MASTERPIECE. I love you bud!!
I just got you to sleep; you don’t care much for sleeping, I think you’re afraid you’ll miss something and the curiosity in you won’t stand for that. You are a year old today! Yaya and Poppy used to tell me “time flies so quickly” and I think, for the first time in my life, I understand what they mean. I remember finding out I was pregnant with you and how humbled I felt that God would pick me for such a blessing as motherhood. I talked your dad’s ear off day and night; I was so excited I couldn’t sit still let alone keep quiet. I knew you were a boy from the start and I still can’t explain how but I feel that I’ve always known you, even before you were growing in my belly. The doctor confirmed we had a son sometime in the middle of the pregnancy and I immediately called your dad to shout with joy over the phone; your father is the best husband a girl could ask for, he loves unconditionally and can make you feel like the most important person in the world. We both knew that having a baby was going to be so much fun but we also understood that it was going to be our greatest charge from the Lord, so we prayed and prayed for the guidance and wisdom to love and nurture you in ways that would make God smile.
You came into this world in much the same way you’ve lived your first year; laid back, relaxed and happy…and big. You have always been larger than your age and, I suspect, always will be. They took you from us immediately after you came out and I vowed right then that I’d fight like Hell if anyone ever tried to take you from me again. Ever. I’ve held tightly to you ever since…for better or worse.
This year has been filled with your first smile, rollover, crawl, steps, words (you said Dada before anything) and shrieks of laughter. So many milestones and I have reveled in every one. You have made me understand the love of God in a way I never have before; He loves us so much that He gave his one and only son, and I could never give you over to that fate. You’ve helped me to understand how the Lord wants to nurture and guide us, how He hurts when we hurt and how He rejoices when we’re happy. I feel all of those things for you.
Your dad and I have talked, many times, about what we want for you in this life and what we need to do to get you there. We promise to prepare you for the path, and not prepare the path for you. We promise to show you God and His word so that you may grow to know and love Him. We promise to hold you accountable to consequences and set high standards so that you may grow up to be honorable and respectful. We promise to show you how to be a good citizen and what it means to be a great American. And we promise to love you without condition, unrestricted, until the end of time. Never doubt that. You are loved, deeply and by many.
You and I spend most of our time together laughing and discovering new things; I have a feeling it will be like this for the greater part of our lives. You are such a joyful little thing and you bring so much joy to others when you’re around. Dad and I can’t wait for this next year, although we know it will also pass too quickly.
My son, you and your dad are the reason God made me. I will strive every day to be worthy of you both.
Love and Lots of Snuggles,