Daily Reads



It's getting harder and harder to write about Michael. Tomorrow he will turn two. My heart is so full of love for this boy I don't even know where to begin. When he was a baby, I used to keep track of his stats for each month - weight, new teeth, new skills, consecutive hours slept, etc. It's easy with a baby. You meet their needs and you cheer with pride at every new milestone reached. It's so much fuzzier now. His personality becomes more distinct every day, and he's constantly learning and absorbing. Every day we're thrilled by his mind, his humor, and his abilities. But he's changing and growing so fast. Even the monthly updates and funny things he says just barely scratch the surface of this little individual who shares our home. How do I describe him at two? How do you keep track of a real live person?
A seasoned parent might read this and chuckle (or snort?), Of course he's a real-live person. But it's all still a little bit shocking to me. Just the way I was shocked when, at the end of labor, a baby came out of me. The same way I was shocked the first time he laughed. When he started sleeping through the night. When he started to defy us. When I realized we would have to teach him (!) to sit still for meals and Bible class. I've always had trouble understanding things unless I've experienced them personally, so of course I'm astounded that our two year old is becoming his own person. Heaven help me when he reaches the teenage years. And adulthood. Yikes. Tim, as always, is the steady voice of reason on this journey of parenthood. He has more than enough sense for both of us, and when I can't understand why Michael won't sit still, or won't obey, or doesn't want to do what I want to do, Tim gently reminds me that we aren't dealing with a robot, but a person who has his own thoughts and opinions. I've been a parent for two years now, and revelations like this still have me in a perpetual state of amazement. Maybe I'll have a better handle on things for baby #2.
Someone recently asked me, with eyes shining full of love, if I could even remember my life before Michael came along. I think my response surprised her. I could feel my face light up as I recalled our lives before we became parents: lazy Saturday mornings sleeping in, an abundance of time and energy for each other, long dinners at good restaurants with good friends, naps, exercise, international travel, shopping in peace alone, concerts, hours spent in bookstores and coffee shops, unlimited time and energy devoted to our careers...the memories are as clear as if it happened yesterday. Yes, I remember life before Michael and sometimes I really miss the freedom and indulgence.
But Michael has brought an entirely different kind of abundance to us. And if there is any way I could possibly define him, or measure his growth at this age, it is by the blessings he brings to our lives. In the dim light of early morning, the way he climbs into our bed grinning and says, "Good morning Mama! Bed so nice! Snuggle up." The way he touches my hair and kisses my cheeks. The way he kisses "Baby Brudder" in my belly. The way he runs, flying into Tim's arms at the end of the day. The way he asks Tim to put on a record, and dances with his Daddy to the music. The way he shares his cookies with his friends in Bible class. The way he marvels at flowers and lizards and bugs. The way he will walk outside on a sunny day, look around and say, "beautiful!" His singing voice. His laugh. His sweet, strong hugs. The crinkly eyes and dimples when he smiles. The way he wants the three of us to be together all the time. Nothing compares to the purity of these gifts. And I'm convinced no other child could have blessed us the way he has. I'm so thankful that God, in his wisdom, made Michael a part of our family.
It's been two years since you came into our lives, and every day is still a miracle. An adjustment. A precious gift.
Happy birthday to you, Michael. We adore you with all our hearts. 
Thank you for two years of love and sweet, sweet blessings.

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