Monday, December 8, 2014

Felix Alexander: ONE YEAR OLD!

Dear Felix,
Today you are ONE.
One year ago today was the best day of my life, the day you made me a Mom.
I marvel at what your little life means.
You have made me more patient, more loving, and a lot more tired. 
You have made me more selfless, more silly, and a much better person than I ever was before. 
You are a gift. A precious gift. 
I know God smiles when you smile. He made you so He could delight in you, and you know what's crazy? He loves you more than I do. I can't even wrap my head around that. 
He delights in your big ol head, your turkey smile, your beautiful brown eyes, and your sweet curly hair. He loves your precious outy belly button, your big smushy cheeks, and your cute bear buns. 
Do you mind if we take a little trip down memory lane?
The year has just flown by so fast that I don't want to forget anything. 

You entered the world on a cool Sunday morning, after a long and difficult night of labor. You arrived at 6:29am, which is precisely what time you wake up every morning.
You came out upside down and all turned around, which made it a little difficult for me. 
But we quickly realized that you were finally here and that was all that mattered. 
You were perfect. 
Sweet cheeks, a full head of hair, a big head like Daddy, and almond shaped eyes like Mommy. 
You were supposed to be born on Grandpa's birthday, but you came 8 days late. That's ok though, you need your own birthday because of how special you are!
Your first Christmas was a blur. You were only two weeks old and things were still very new and difficult for all of us. This picture describes pretty well how things were:

The first few months of your life were hard. You spit up all the time, and your tummy troubles had us searching endlessly for the right kind of food to give you.
Once we settled on something it got a bit easier, and I'm so thankful you finally grew out of your spitting days! Now you just spit because you think it's fun. I'm ready for you to grow out of that :).
But, you have always been happy. Oh, so happy.
Even when you endlessly fought naps. Even when you kept us up all night.
You were happy. And you are still the happiest baby I know. 

Ok dude, I've already taken 3 breaks to cry while writing this post. I hope you appreciate these letters to you when you're older so all of my tears don't go to waste!
Just kidding, nothing is ever wasted on you my love.
This year we had so many adventures.
We took you to Oregon, Washington, and Southern California!
You have been in the pool and on the beach quite a bit -- we are so lucky to have had the opportunity to do so many things with you in your first year.
We also did lots of hiking, road trips around the state, and so many trips to visit your grandmas and grandpas. 
You even got to see Crater Lake! This is one of my favorite pictures. I mean, the lake looks cool and all..but look at my boy!

Can we talk about what a flirt you are?
When I took this photo, I just knew what kind of damage those lips and those eyes could do to a lady.
And now, as a big one year old boy you haven't stopped flirting -- you flirt with someone everywhere we go! But don't be fooled, people are flirting back, my dear boy -- how could they not with a grin like that?!
Your favorite person besides me and Dad of course, is your Grandma Alison. I don't blame you, she's a favorite of mine too. You light up when you see her, you leap out of my arms and into hers. And she gets weepy about it just like I do.
Apparently weepiness runs in the family. 
You also love Autumn the dog, kitties, Grandma Pat, birds, airplanes, balls, and wheels. 
You love your lovey. Like serious love. I bet you're snuggling with him as you read this from the future. 
You still love to drink bottles, eat num num crackers, and lick ice cream. 
You say mama, dada, ball, "A-DER", and OW!
You don't have very much interest in walking, probably because you crawl at the speed of light. 
Seriously kid, you could burn a hole in the ground. 
You are very insistent on feeding yourself, and you hate hate hate to get your diaper changed. 
You still are a catnapper. You often need 3 naps a day, still. I'm trying to let go of what the books say about sleeping though. It's obvious that you need as many naps as you take. 
You love taking baths, crawling on different textures of floors, throwing balls ( or anything that is throwable), and putting your hands in cups and boxes.
You immediately take off socks when you can, which gets me the side-eye from old ladies in various establishments -- I've started to put shoes on you to help prevent you from pulling off your socks!
You are so busy. You are always moving, always finding something that interests you. I love to watch you run around the house, exploring anything and everything. When you do want to be held, its not for very long -- so I try to soak up every snuggle I can get these days. 
But you do love to be picked up. You raise your hands up to us whenever you are ready to be picked up. You also love riding on Dad's shoulders -- you should see the look on your face when you're up there!

You are a big boy. You mostly wear size 18 month clothes.
You weigh about 24 pounds, and stand tall at 32 inches. 
You didn't get sick for a very long time, until the last two weeks you have had two colds and a bad ear infection. Maybe if you didn't stick all the things in your mouth we wouldn't have this predicament!
Speaking of mouths, you have 6 teeth. 4 on top and 2 on bottom.
Teething has not been easy for you. Some people talk about babies that are "easy teethers" -- I wonder what planet those people are on because there is nothing easy about teething!

You love to laugh. And the things you find most hilarious are raspberries on your belly, being tickled on your belly and back, and any funny noises that we make. You are starting to laugh at people too, which is so funny to watch. You are very entertaining -- the way you watch people and wait for them to notice you, then you flash a huge grin when they finally do. 
I am a much more relaxed parent than I ever thought I would be. 
Perhaps you are an easy baby. Perhaps I married your Dad, who is the most easy going man on the planet. I hope you get his laid back vibe. 
And you are laid back for the most part, until I leave the room.
You are a fierce mamas boy.
And I'm totally not complaining, the feeling of being "needed" by someone so badly is a feeling only a mother can understand. It is special, it is mysterious, it is totally beautiful.
And I try to remember that when you freak out when I put you down so I can use the restroom. 
I tell myself that I can wait another hour to use the bathroom when you are napping. 
Motherhood is so fulfilling in a I-constantly-forget-who-I-am sort of way. 

I remember writing in the early days of your life that I've never been so lost, and so found.
That is still true, dear boy. 
I have no idea where I am, but I know I'm right where I need to be. 
You have always had a long list of nicknames.
I wonder what your nickname will be when you're old enough to read this.
I'll just name a few:
Turkey Boy
Boo Bear
Little Dude
Butter Ball

I wish I had a decent explanation for those, but I don't. You somehow fit every single one of those names. But Turkey is the most fitting.
Have I mentioned that you are the most handsome Turkey ever in existence?

Well, Felix.
I'm crying again.
I bet you're used to that by now. 

I hope you get to know someday the absolute amazing joy it is to be a parent. 
I didn't know my heart could expand so wide and so far to make room for the amount of love I have for you.
I hope that you grow up and know how much we care for you.
I hope we give you the space and opportunity to explore, follow your ambitions and dreams, and make plenty of messes along the way. 
I hope I am patient with you during all of those messes.
I hope that you always feel at home when you snuggle into my lap. 
I hope you never tire of my constant kisses. 
I hope that you grow up to be brave, strong, and confident in who you are. 
I hope you meet Jesus, I hope you are as captivated with Him as He is with you. I hope you give your life to Him, and I hope you choose to live in the fullness of His love. 
I hope you know that whatever and whoever you choose to love, we will never, ever, ever stop loving you. 
I hope you know that our love for you is unconditional and absolute. 

Being your Mama is my favorite thing ever ever ever.
 I don't think I could ever put into proper words what a blessing you are.
I will mourn (for a little while) that you are no longer a tiny baby, but I will delight in each new adventure that we have.
I'm so happy we were able to experience every big milestone with you. 
From grasping your first object, seeing your first smile, hearing your first laugh, and seeing your first eager crawl across the living room -- you have been an absolute joy to watch grow. 
I look forward to the next year of your life as you learn to walk, talk, and make us fall even more in love with you.

Happy First Birthday, sweet boy of mine. 
You are so incredibly loved. 


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