Happy birthday! You are two years old today.
Every year (ok, both years so far) as your birthday approaches, I think back to that awesome day when your mom and dad told us that they were going to have a baby. I know just where I was standing in the living room at your house, and just the way your dad laughed when I couldn’t figure out what they were talking about.
It’s hard to believe that it’s been more than two years since that day, but—just like I wrote to you last year—I don’t remember life without you.
The funniest thing ever is watching you play the guitar. At first your eyes are wide open and then the minute your finger hits the strings, you screw your face up into a perfect mock grimace, and roll your head all around, just feeling the music. Then when you’re done, you open up your eyes and act all normal, as though you weren’t just channeling some long gone rock god.
You love music class and your teacher, Lenka. I have seen countless videos of you sitting on Lenka’s lap during a song. Always you, even though there are many other kids in the class. Lenka tells me that you two have a thing for each other. This much is evident. And the best part is that after you beeline for her and settle in, you stare at everyone else impassively and barely react to the actual song. But when it’s time to dance with scarves or other props, you bring out your finest moves.
I love when you come to our house for family dinner or any other visit. You bounce up and down and smile like crazy, wave your arms, laugh, and say hi in your throaty little voice. “Hi, Dout! Hi Ra Ra! Hi Rob!” It is impossible not to smile when you’re around. You are very independent and good at entertaining yourself, and you're not afraid to stick up for yourself if Scout is giving you a hard time. Sometimes the two of you just play quietly in her room with puzzles or books or cook together in the kitchen.
You will still walk up to any strange man and raise your arms to be held. I’ve seen it again and again. I had a friend over recently, a guy you’ve never met before. You ran into my house for a visit, went straight past me and directly into his arms. Of course, he was utterly charmed.
There is so much sweetness in you, always. But you are obviously a toddler, quite expressive and opinionated. You revel in telling us all NO, or giving us a withering look to show that you are the one in charge and we are tiresome. A quick game of peekaboo often has you smiling again.
You are really super coordinated and love to throw or kick a ball, and to ride your scooter. It's so much fun to see you run and jump, and to think about the very recent days when you couldn’t get both feet all the way off the ground. Now you can do so many things.
Sometimes you will climb up and ride around on my wheelchair with me. I hold you tight and we zoom around while you wave to everybody. And I sneak lots of kisses from your chubby cheeks, because you are my very favorite boy.