my dearest phix,
today you are exactly one-and-a-half-years old.
after writing that, i just sat and stared at my screen for a minute, or maybe 17 minutes, and wondered how on earth this could be real. i mean, sure, there are still plenty of days that feel like they extend for an eternity with the minutes crawling by until it’s time for you to go to bed, but mostly, i feel like i blinked, rubbed my eyes, and suddenly you went from being a tiny baby into a full fledged boy.
and soon, a big brother.
i’ve had trouble keeping up with your letters/my blog, and there is so much you’ve learned, accomplished and figured out, but i don’t often have the luxury of a free moment to write about it. your dad and i are doing our best to capture you with photos and videos…but no matter how many pictures we take, we can’t really capture the incredible, joyful, exhuberant, decisive, entirely addictive, essence of you.
your uncle collin has been living with us for the summer and taking care of you while i’m at work, and so aptly we call him ‘the manny’. it’s been so sweet watching your relationship develop and you ADORE each other. you watch collin’s every move, and try to mimic his musical talent by holding a spatula like it’s a guitar and banging on the kick drum. and your uncle is the best manny ever – he takes you on trips to the beach, and hikes, and for some reason all the ladies you encounter find themselves swooning.
your vocabulary is expanding daily – it started with ‘dad’ (thanks a lot!) and ‘uh oh’ (every.single.time you purposefully drop food from your highchair), but i’ve now lost track of all the words you know. a few of your favorites are cracker, baby, knees, meat, juice, uncle, doggy, ‘vroom vroom’ (vespa), shoes (which you still refuse to wear), and you’ve started saying ‘love you’ – even though your version sounds a lot more like how this dog says it.
besides food, one of your favorite things in the world are trucks, and so whenever you see, or even hear, a truck outside you have to tell us about it. but the problem is you can’t really pronounce the word ‘truck’ so instead you loudly exclaim ‘cock!’ which is sort of close…but not quite. the other day you had a playdate with your new little friend, leili,and you said the word ‘cock’ so many times, and with such perfect annunciation, that she started repeating it. and well, i worry that we might not get to have playdates with leili again.
profanity aside, you are such a joyful, sweet little boy. with wide toothy smiles you greet everyone, and when you meet a new friend at the playground your first instinct is to go up and engulf them in a big hug. my heart broke a thousand times when you did this recently, and a little girl rejected your advances – she pushed you away with a frown on her face, and i could tell you were completely baffled, wondering who WOULDN’T want to be hugged?
and i so fiercely want to protect you from all of it. from the playground meanies. and pollution. and miley cyrus. and bad drivers. i want to shield you from all hurt. and people who lie. and giant disappointments. and bad news. but i can only do so much, and the more independent you become, the more i feel like my ability to protect you lessens.
but what i can do instead is hug you tight. tickle you until you feel like you might explode, and kiss every inch of your smoochly little face.
and i’m going to do that, every day, until you’re big enough to shirk my affection and talk to me about needing ‘personal space’.
because i’m your mama and you are, by far, the sweetest part of my everyday.