My sweet tiny baby becomes a toddler today and I am feeling all the emotions. As I look back over the past year it’s hard to believe how much he has grown and changed, and how many different versions of the same baby that I got to meet and fall in love with over this first year.
There was the tiny 6 pound, 15 ounce newborn with the little mewling cries that only wanted snuggles all day. Then of course the curious three month old that wanted to see everything around him. Next came the fun 6 month old who started loving to play with his toys. Then the non-stop exploring 9 month old that got into EVERYTHING. And even as my heart explodes with love for the silly, adventurous little boy that my baby has become, I also find that my heart aches and misses all those other versions of my toddler. So although we celebrate his birthday today, I can’t help but hold a few wishes in my heart as well.
Wishes for the Birthday Boy
I hope you never lose your fearlessness, and that you always approach life head-on. That you continue to reach for what you want with the same reckless abandon that has you climbing and crawling with no thought of failure or worry of falling.
I hope you always know that your family has your back. That whether literally or metaphorically, you know we’ll always be here to catch you – a little warning before letting go of the coffee table would be nice, though.
I hope you never underestimate the power of your smile. That just as you brighten our entire day with that toothy grin now, you can change the trajectory of someone else’s day with the simple gesture.
I hope you never stop exploring and finding wonder in the world around you. The world can be a scary place sometimes, but there’s always beauty to be found and joy comes after the storm.
I hope you never lose your curiosity. That you always find something new to learn and never hesitate to dive in deeper to understand something better.
I hope you never hesitate to wake me up at night. Just as I don’t mind singing and rocking you back to sleep now, I will never be annoyed if you need me.
I hope I can always be a safe place for you. Sure, you’ll eventually grow out of resting your head against me when strangers talk to you, but I hope that feeling of safety never leaves, no matter how big you grow.
I hope you continue to find moments to be silly. Whether that’s playing peek-a-boo or taking a moment to laugh at an old memory, life is too short to be serious all the time.
I hope you NEVER forget that you are loved. That no matter what you do or where you go, you can’t do anything that will change how we feel about you.
Lastly, I hope you also get to love all the different versions of yourself. That as you grow older and change you continue to find new hobbies and that the people in your life brings you the same joy that you bring to us.
As we celebrate your first year around the sun, we look forward to so many more with you and all the different versions that we’ll get to meet. So even though my mama heart is heavy, it also rejoices, because you’re so worth celebrating my baby boy.
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Lauren Lee is a longtime dog mom transitioning to life as a rookie human mom. She is married to her college sweetheart, Josh, and they welcomed their son, Oliver, to the world in June. Lauren is a Jacksonville State University alumni and has been a published writer since she was sixteen. In her free time, Lauren enjoys reading, writing, knitting and hiking with her two dogs.