This one’s for the smallest

IMG_5737Dear Mr Smiley.

I’m sitting here on the eve of your birthday pondering the last year, the last year of you in our lives, the crazy year of moving, new jobs, no sleep and you, wonderful you. I had no idea you would enter our lives so smoothly, the comparisons begin right here I’m afraid my lovely son. Your brother’s entrance into the world was so stilted and strange and yours, well yours was the opposite.

It was night, dark and tender, a flat full of soft soft light, me barely believing what my body was capable of, tripped out on gas and air, in my own world in a land beyond the pain. Midwives flapped about trying to get settled, no time for stillness or cups of tea for them. Daddy ensured your brother made it to the arrival of the lovely Jo to whisk him away with little upset, and you and me laboured away. You turned and swam down (clearly Finding Nemo made it through the womb walls..) I groaned and walked and contracted and finally pushed, scared out of my mind that you would get stuck. And then, the unlikely happened. Your head came out and all was still. All was still until the last final effort of my body squeezed out your body. You cried. You were there. You were covered in goo but you were mine. You pooed all over me as your little tiny mouth found it’s food and comfort, naked we cuddled and cuddled until you fell asleep. Peace written all over your unblemished smooth gorgeous perfect face.

It was a labour about you and me, you my gorgeous second born, you my squiggy son and our cuddles over the next few days cemented in our love.

It hasn’t been an easy year after that joyous crazy night of wonder. You didn’t really like being a tiny baby, the boob provided fuel but little else, again entirely the reverse of your brother. You were hungry all night and fed every hour or so, you pooed constantly and cried lots. I spent much time trying to persuade you to sleep in the sling and then put you down, never something you’ve been all that convinced of. A dummy provided some relief as it seemed to soothe you in a way nothing else could and I love cuddling you to sleep.

Then the smiles started and I don’t think you’ve looked back. As soon as you could interact with this crazy world you were plummeted into, you’ve grown in happiness and delight. Smiles make everything better in your book. I love seeing you stare and point at people until they notice and you reward them with a stunner. I love the way you speed crawl into my lap and lay your head in it grinning up at me. I love the gooey smiles you used to give me from the boob when it finally worked in the way you wanted (instant food. now. or I shall cry). (I really thought about giving it up at some points, like when you’d get into a frenzy when milk didn’t appear fast enough and need to sleep again to reset and try again. Like when you stopped for a week when ill and I worried constantly about you. I love that you love food now, I love being less anxious about your feeds.)

Darling boy, you are wonderful, I want you to always know that. Always know that you are loved and valued. However much your brother might lash out at you when he’s frustrated, he loves you dearly. However much I swear at you when you need to sleep on my face to be settled I love you more than I can say. However much Daddy has to leave each morning he loves you to the moon and back and so much more again.

We are so glad you’ve joined our family. For you didn’t turn our world upsidedown, your brother assured that three years ago. You joined a world familiar with sleep deprivation and small people. You got a Mummy who wasn’t achingly confused for the first year of your life but one who was able to enjoy you and delight in the wonder rather than cry at the madness.

I pray so much your delight in people would last and grow strong, that your dogged determination would channel into powerful love for others and commitment in this life. I pray that you would come to know your Maker as your friend and more. I pray that you would be wholehearted in this life, full of compassion and love. I pray that you would draw the outsider in and I pray that you would always, whatever, truly know that you are loved and would be strong and secure in that love. I pray for your protection in this world of ours, so beautiful and so broken and that the struggles you face in this life would not shake you or destroy you but our wonderful Maker would use them to bring good to you and those around you.

Oh my beautiful boy, I can’t wait to see what kind of toddler, preschooler, small boy, teenager and man you will become.

All my love

PS This would be much easier if you didn’t keep interrupting for cuddles to help you sleep. Could you sort it out please?

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