As I start this post, you’ll be eight in one hour – at 1:06pm. (Which, you should probably feel extra loved because I don’t remember when your brother was born. I’d bet 3:28pm, but that’s probably not right. Poor second child.) Eight whole years, my sweet firstborn.
This past year has been one of my favorites; seven is a great age. You’re independent and curious. You ask hard questions (like a few weeks ago when I spent 30 minutes explaining to you how a car’s engine and transmission work. Thanks for the lesson 25 years ago, Dad!). You’re growing up but you’re still completely innocent.
Your entire life, you’ve woken up happy in the mornings; this is one of the best parts of you. You’re full of joy at the moment your eyes blink open. You love school, you love your friends, you love your teachers. This is such a blessing to us – I never have to wonder if you’re having a rough time. You love science, you’re pretty great at math, you love coding games and solving problems, you’re a pretty great speller, and you tolerate reading. You and your brother may open a library some day; you’re quite into collecting books – if I could only get you to stick your noses in them to actually read them.
This past year, you’ve cranked your love-for-sports dial up about 95 notches. You live for football news and baseball is just around the corner. When you play, we love watching you succeed at something that makes your heart so happy.
You and Jude have a magic relationship that I couldn’t dream of existing before he was born. You’re less of his big brother and more of his equal. You are best friends, fierce enemies, and completely loyal to one another. I’ve never witnessed a better example of unconditional love than what you two share. You’re still human, you still make each other crazy, but you’re both quick to get back to fun. You have a siblinghood that I didn’t know was possible.
Your littlest sibling is kicking me as I write this. You’re convinced it’s a girl 94% of the time. You love little kids and have already plotted how we can fit the crib in your room so you can take care of the baby for us. I can’t wait to show you how screamy babies are – you’ll change your mind. 🙂
While you definitely have challenging days and weeks that make your dad and I wonder where our go-with-the-flow kid went, for the most part you continue to be the easiest kid to parent. You are full of vinegar some days. You’re always annoyingly picky about food. You roll your eyes and stomp your feet and are Very Convincing in the part you’re playing of Jekyll and Hyde – but you’re also entirely too full of sugar to stay mad at us for long. And: a threat of being grounded from your precious nerf guns is enough to stop you in you tracks. I’ve got you figured out, kid.
You’re halfway (!!) to sixteen and I’m just along for the ride at this point. I love loving you. I love watching you grow. I feel completely ill-equipped to be your mom, every single day. I remain in disbelief that God gave you to us, we don’t deserve you. Thanks for being you, sunshine. I love you so much.
p.s. Jude was born at 3:28. I love you equally.