I promise I'm not going to write one of these dweeby birthday letters every year (we both know I'm cooler than that) but the second year of your life has been a big one for us and I think it’s worthy of a letter. I mean, I probably won’t give you the link to this blog until you're 18 and mentally capable of dealing with the embarrassment anyway. So it will be nice for you to look back on TWO and know that there was a time in life when your biggest problem was deciding whether you wanted milk or juice. And then you'd throw a tantrum anyway because you weren't actually thirsty in the first place.
When I think back to your 1st birthday, I can't believe my eyes when I look at the larger than life boy bouncing into me at 6 o'clock this morning. I didn't know one person could change so much in one year. You are now your own unique individual. You were promoted from baby to boy before I had even prepared myself. And... You. Are. Amazing.
Seriously, if you weren't my son I would still want to be around you. You bring so much joy. And stress. But mostly joy.
I'm not being biased. I mean I'm obviously pretty chuffed that I can look at you and say 'I made that'. But tonight I had to remove myself from your party to have a little cry at how thankful I am for the people you are surrounded with. They love you, and you bring them that special Reuben joy too.
This year you are independent. You learned to walk, then run, then climb the shelves in Tesco. You know your likes and dislikes. You hate potatoes and you love Dinosaurs. You feed yourself, read to yourself, and run by yourself...miles ahead of me. You handle flights of stairs with ease and you understand directions. You know how to put clothes in the wash basket, even if I find my favourite jeans in the toy basket 3 days later.
You are resilient. When I wasn’t always okay, you were the perfect companion. You have coped with a new creche, new house, and a new city. You are a city boy and you take it all in your stride. You are forgiving. I let you down daily and you always come back with more love than before. In fact, as we speak I am borrowing out of your birthday money to pay a little bill (which I promise I will replace next week). Look at you helping me in a crisis already.
You are hilarious - you do everything with a quirky little attitude. When I find you sitting fully clothed in a bath full of water and you just say 'Oh hi'. Or when your sassy little personality shines and you call me Rebecca because I haven’t answered to mummy yet. You are a creature of routine. You watch 101 Dalmatians on the same day every week and you don’t close your eyes at night until I have prayed with you. By the time there are 3 candles on your cake, you will be saying your own prayers. I am sure of it.
In September you pranced through Rome as if you built it yourself. You are a leader. And you will do great things as an adult.
In spite of all of this, I love how you need me more than ever. When you are done being independent for the day, you need to hold my hand. When you have ran too fast, you need me to kiss the invisible wound on your leg. When you have had a day out of routine, you need an exhausted cuddle.
On the 26th June, after spending a whole week alone with you at the North Coast, I realised something. I love to spend time with you. Not because I am legally obligated to, but because you are wonderful to be around. As we sat and watched the seals together on Rathlin Island (romantic, I know) and you babbled away… I realised that I have the privilege of being your mama. It is a gift. You are growing into an incredible young boy.
When you were just a couple of months old, I loved you because you were mine. Now, I love you because you are you.
Keep doing your thing,
Mummy (or Rebecca when you’re being sassy)