Mark This As Certain, and Forever.
Today is your birthday. You're three years old, love.
Over the weekend, we celebrated your birthday with some of our friends and family members, and at one point, you were out in the garden with your friends, running and laughing through a pile of raked leaves, your pigtails scrambling with each wild giggle. And I just stood at stared at you, wondering where the little baby went and how this little girl managed to sneak in while I wasn't looking.
This little girl with all the opinions ("Can I wear this Thomas shirt? I know it has lunch and dinner on it but it's clean on this sleeve and on the bottom?") or the lack of opinions ("I want sumfin to eat, please!" "What do you want?" "... I don't know. Sumfin from your ideas, mom."). The little girl who puts words and thoughts through the woodchipper in her mind, asking me if we're going to "shis house" (because if it's "his house," then the feminine must be "shis house") or why the squirrel is climbing up the tree sticks (branches). This little girl who rides a bike (with training wheels) at a breakneck speed, ringing the bell like she's challenging the ice cream man.
You're my favorite person in the whole world, Birdy. And you always will be, even if I meet Thom Yorke and he offers to buy me a cookie. As quickly as you can make my head explode and implode with frustration, often simultaneously (well done, you), you are just as quick to melt my heart into pancake batter when you gently kiss my Dexcom sensors after installation, telling me, "It will only hurt for a minute, Mom." Words like "love" and "family" were redefined the moment I found out you were sprouting inside of me.
I love laying in your bed at night and listening to you recap the day. I love the way your hair curls into ringlets while you're in the bathtub. I love the way your brow furrows when you hear a baby crying, wondering, "Where is shis mommy?" I love the concern and compassion you have for people (the high school kids who were jogging in the winter without hats on, the lady at Dunkin Donuts who had a bandaid on her finger and you were concerned that she might need a kiss from 'shis mommy') and for non-people (the patchy stray cat that you and Daddy have named "Fluffy" and feed when you think I'm not looking, the hedgehog in the garden who eats acorns from piles you left on the deck last fall). I love all the moments that make parenting awesome, and I secretly love all the ones that make it hard but would you please ignore what I just said and for God's sake eat the dinner we have prepared for you instead of asking for Spiderman fruit snacks.
Today is the last letter on this blog that I'll be writing for you. While I love clicking on the "diabetic mommy" link and spinning through the last three years by way of these updates, it's time to retire the tradition, at least in a public sense (because eventually, you'll be like, "MOM! Stop doing this."). You have gone from my adorable baby blob of oft-gassy and constantly-smiling Bird to my smart, happy little girl with a personality and story all your own. And while your story is so closely intertwined with mine, it remains yours.
I've loved you for a long time. Longer than I've been laughing, or seeing, or breathing. Three years ago, I was able to see all of my hopes and dreams come together in your eyes, and in your smile. Thank you for letting me share these moments with these friends, Birdy. I hope, by the time you read these letters, you'll realize that, even though I might be telling you not to wear so much makeup or to always wear your seat belt in the spaceship cars of the future, I love you. And have always loved you. And will always love you. There aren't many constants in the world, but that's one that you can mark as certain, and forever.
Happy birthday to you, my gorgeous, brilliant, crazy Bird.