mine for one year : river
you wrap your tiny flower-stem arms around my neck and melt into me. i love it when you stay there, if only for a few seconds. how i love that you love me. it is one of the most wonderful things i know.
if there is one thing that doesn’t bother me, it’s your feet slightly blackened by the earth. perhaps it should, but it doesn't. it makes me proud. that’s my boy, my nature child. you walked at nine months because you're fearless and even though you stumble every time you always get up again and you are always smiling. you pause for a moment, because you can feel the change in texture beneath your feet: from the warm, sharp gravel to the cool softness of the grass. your toes grab the ground, your legs jiggle and your knees dimple with each confident, wobbly step.
you love water, and i love to watch you in the water. your dewy eyelashes curl on your soft, round cheeks. your eyes redden and you gasp as the cool liquid splashes in your face, but you smile [you are always smiling] and look at me as if to say mom, this is way too cool.
you climb. your table, the chairs, the back of the couch, all twenty steps up to our apartment.
you run. you laugh out loud as i chase you around the apartment and shriek "i'm going to get you!" and you like to chase me, as well. around the coffee table, the couch, into the bedroom, behind the door. you found me!
you dance. twirling, bobbing your head, clapping, bouncing at the knees, shaking, moving your hips, kicking, waving your arms. you dance gently to slow music, and energetically to upbeat music.
you love. everyone -- stranger, friend, or family. you are so affectionate. you hug and share your [slobbery] food and give kisses to anyone who asks.
you make music. you strum daddy's guitar and bob your head, you drum the chair and wave your arms, you shake shake your maraca and i just know you are going to be making beautiful sounds when you are older.
you talk. you have picked up so many words, just in the last couple weeks. i know once you start, you won't stop. but i can't wait. i can't wait to talk to you about the sky, about bugs, about the ocean, about creating, about compassion, about god.
i have never before known love so fierce. my heart catches in my throat, and i know you are my reason. i am so thankful to god for each and every day with you that he gives me. i feel undeserving. you're mine? i get to keep you? i get to look at you and hold you and cuddle you and nourish you and teach you and strengthen you and encourage you and love you?
being your mommy is the perfect gift. it makes me feel so full and brings me unending joy. today, this was my passing thought -- it's funny that i love you as i loved you in the beginning [more...more than the beginning]. i still think you are precious. i still think you are a doll. everything you do is like something brand new. it doesn't matter how often i've seen it, just the fact that you are in my life overwhelms me. you are the best thing that has happened to me.
river, you have been mine for one whole year [and three days]. happy birthday my sweet baby boy.