Twelve years ago on my birthday, I thought I'd have a baby.
Because that was my due date. And my birthday. So it was totally meant to be and I was going to have my baby on my birthday.
Also, and this won't mean anything to you at the moment, I was absolutely not going to have an epidural if I could help it, and certainly not a C-section.
And then all last week 12 years ago I waited and waited and waited.
Then 12 years ago on this very day, you were born!
And you were perfect.
You had the most perfect round head and beautiful skin. You were honestly the cutest baby I had ever seen. Although to be fair, I never really thought babies were all that cute before you.
But you were also the cutest baby so many other people had ever seen. So it was true. Cutest ever.
Things were really, really hard that summer. That year, in fact.
But the best thing was that we had a baby. We had you.
And now you are 12! You're almost exactly my height.
I picked you up on Tuesday after seven weeks of camp, and you'd grown like two inches! You're already bigger than me. In 15 minutes you're going to be taller than me.
And not only had you grown physically, you'd grown emotionally.
You have a peacefulness about you. You seem at ease in your skin. You radiate happy.
We were so proud, so very proud, of how you spent that time away from home and embraced it. I know you were homesick. In your letters you'd say how much fun you were having, and that you'd like to come home after first session, and also, could we send your Magic cards?
In one letter you said, "Dear Mom and Dad, I miss all of you, and I miss Nana and India and Wanda most of all."
Daddy said, "We didn't even make the top three!"
We missed you and we were so grateful you could be out in the beautiful woods on the edge of a lake having an incredible summer. After being home, like physically stuck in the house, for so many months, this was such a blessing.
Driving to pick you up, I was so excited. When I arrived at camp and told them who I was there to pick up, they said my smile was huge, and I said, "I can't wait to see my boy!"
When we dropped you off, you were anxious, and you didn't want goodbye hugs or kisses. When I picked you up you were totally cool with me hugging you and hugging you and kissing you and hugging you some more. You were even fine with selfies.
Those seven weeks were so good for you. Being apart was so worth it, seeing how happy you are, and what a good emotional space you are in.
You worked really hard at camp acquiring new skills, and you got your name on the banner for arts and crafts champion. I know you are proud of this. We certainly are, too.
You and I have just been hanging out in Portland in between camp and family camp, and having such a nice time the two of us. We never get this kind of time. You're funny and creative and charming and just a pleasure to spend time with.
Today you got a brownie ice cream sundae and said it was totally better than birthday cake. You're just in such a delightfully positive frame of mind. You were even pleasant about me poking a swab up your nose for the pre-camp Covid test at the drive-through.
Growing up we were so excited to go to the A&W drive-in and to eat hamburgers and drink root beef floats in our car. I know it sounds weird that this was exciting.
And now here we are, driving up to Walgreens and parking at the pharmacy window and poking swabs in our noses, putting them carefully in a tube of noxious liquid, and sealing them in a hazmat bag, all as instructed by the pharmacists behind glass and wearing a mask.
I will tell you that even with my overactive imagination, I could never have imagined this.
Root beer floats would be more fun. Although not poked up our noses.
Happy birthday, my sweetheart!
You are such a treasure. I love you more than I can express. I love you so big. More than star twinkles. More than sunshine.
Love love love,