Yesterday you turned 17 months old and we celebrated by going out for pizza after church with your friend, Boone! It seems like every day you change so much and learn so many new things that it’s hard to keep up.
Physically, you are a boss….a gentle giant, a bull in a china shop. I have no idea how much you weigh now, but it feels like you are much heavier than the 35 lbs. you were last time we checked. You are wearing mostly 2 and 3T clothing and a size 7 shoe. Your hair is glorious and we have plenty of pictures to prove it! You love brushing your teeth and get furious when we take your tooth brush away. You have recently learned what your belly button is and will proudly lift your shirt and show anyone who might ask to see it. Your dad thinks it’s funny to ask you this when you are wearing your footed pj’s and laughs when you can’t figure out how to lift your shirt.
We bought you a radio flyer tricycle but your feet can’t quite reach the pedals well enough to take off. Soon enough, I’m sure. Your obsession with golf rivals that of your dad’s. I am constantly tripping over plastic clubs and hearing the thump of golf balls as you throw them up and down the hall. The other morning your dad and I were making breakfast and you were playing with your clubs in the kitchen. We both watched in amazement as you placed a ball on the floor and took a perfect swing with your club. It was amazing and neither of us could believe what we had just witnessed. I’m certain I have never seen your dad beam with such pride!
You talk a lot, though we aren’t always certain of what you are saying. Some of your favorite words are: nose, ball, dada, mama, more, milk, yes, no, papaw, mamaw and the mumblings of what we believe is “razzle”. You have started throwing your milk cup and food on the floor when you are finished and I have been pointing at you with a stern “no”. This past week you looked at me and threw your finger in my face as you sternly told ME “no”. I wasn’t prepared and buried my face in my hands as I walked out of the room laughing. I’m learning.
Daycare. Oh….this is where the magic happens. The other day I arrived to pick you up and your teacher came up to let me know that she was incredibly sorry, but that your dad and I are going to have our hands full with you (tell me something I don’t know). When I asked her what happened she began telling me that when going outside, all the children are instructed to walk single file and stop at the door that leads to the playground while she and the other teachers hold the classroom and hallway doors open (to make sure each child follows). She explained that you were leading the line and she instructed you to stop at the door, which you did. She apparently turned her head for a few seconds too long and when she turned back around not only had you managed to reach up and open the door to outside, but you were holding the door open as you waved all the other children outside.
The great escape! Ha!
You also have a sweet little girlfriend, Charlotte, and a few weeks ago when I came to pick you up she chased after you yelling your name and crying. It was adorable but you seemed unfazed. I told your dad I wanted to get you a shirt made that says “All the Bitches love me!” but I fear the wrath of the many conservative parents who would complain. This morning you walked into class wearing my enormous red ski gloves. Why? Because you can….and you had been wearing them around the house all morning so there was no need for you to part with them. I hope you learn that you will not always be accepted, or understood even, but that doesn’t mean you have to conform. Today it might have been getting strange looks because of what you were wearing, but one day it will mean ignoring all the people who tell you that you will never succeed in your crazy ideas. They might be right…but never let them be the reason you don’t try.
Your dad and I will be leaving you this week. We will be gone for 5 days and it will be the longest we have ever been apart. I’m glad you will get to visit with your Grammy, Grampy and Uncle Jed because they haven’t seen you in over a year….but I am overwhelmingly anxious about us being apart. You will never know the extent of my love and the amount of mental and physical preparation it takes to be away from you. I have avoided the internet for weeks and have been unable to watch the news for fear of coming across a tragic story involving the loss of a child or mother. I can’t even find the words to expand upon this because my fears often take my mind to a place no parent wants to go.
I love you so much sweet boy and I pray this is something you will never question. You are my reason and if your dad and I were to fail at everything we ever had the courage to attempt in life, I promise we will never fail You.