You came running up to me yesterday and wanted to sit in my lap. You had been playing with cars, I was sitting on the computer being a terrible mother playing Solitaire. You were craving some us time. So you sat, your legs draped over mine, face-to-face with me, our mother-and-sonness intertwined.
“Do you know what?” I asked you, looking at the little boy sitting on my lap. How had you become such an autonomous little person? Those hands which once could only grasp my finger can now pick up food and hold a juice cup and play with cars. That smile, once so gummy and novel is now full of tiny little teeth and big words. Those legs which used to kick me from the inside now support the weight and the velocity of a toddler. And somehow, you’re mine. Somehow this little boy sitting on my lap and wrapping his arms around my neck and saying “Hi Mama!” is the same little baby that grew in my womb.
“Today is your last day as a one-year-old”. I looked at your one-year-old’s eyes, your one-year-old’s smile, your one-year-old’s ears and nose and chin. “Tomorrow you will be two!”
“TWO!” You proclaimed proudly. What a huge deal this is for both of us. For you, it means the possibility of more birthday cake. For me it means getting to experience more of you.
“That’s right! Two! You are getting to be such a big boy, Cameron!” I love watching you grow up. I love the new things that you bring to us each day. New words, new games, new hugs and kisses and ways to interact. I love that I can be a part – no, play a part – in this incredible person you are and are becoming.
You took your two hands and pointed them inwardly. Bouncing them off your chest, you looked at me proudly. “Big Boy. Cameron. Me!”
There was so much pride in that statement. So much promise. So much of you and the big boy you are becoming and the baby I remember. So much.
So much love.
Birthdays have always been hard for me. They mark the passing of time, experiences left behind, memories forgotten. Each new age for me has always been bitter-sweet because of those things I will never be able to recover. But somehow, surprisingly, being a mother changed all that. Somehow, all the joys and blessings we have experienced as a family since you joined us has me looking forward to so much more. I could never wish to pause time and keep you here, in this place, on my lap, even though these laughs we share make me happier than I could express. I know we will share more. I know we have so much more experiencing to do. I know we have so much more growing to do. I know we have so much more loving to do. I know there are so many more blessings to receive because you are part of our family.
I love you. I love you for who you were when you were a writhing newborn placed in my arms during your first moments two years ago. I love you for the man you will be when you are ten, twenty-five, forty, ninety. But mostly, I love all of you, right now, just how you are. I love the person that these past two years have shaped you into. I love the role you play in this family. I love the things you love and love when you share them with me. I just love you.
Happy Second Birthday, Cameron. Big Boy. You.