A letter to myself on my son's second birthday

Well mama, you've done it.

You have somehow successfully kept your rambunctious, teetering more than he's toddling, monster man alive for another year. These 365 days have been filled with a lot of ups and downs - and boy, do I mean a lot - but somehow you and your sweet bundle of bouncing baby boy have made it through mostly unscathed.

Sure, there were some scrapes and bruises, like the time he mini-minotaured his big boy head into your collarbone so hard it left you black and blue, or the time he stopped, dropped and rolled down your basement stairs, leaving his poor head scraped and both of you shook up. But the important thing is you made it.

You're not the same mama you were two years, before you had your little boy. That was back when you still worried about how you could possibly love another human being as much as you loved your daughter. Remember those days? You’d stay up late at night, fretting about how you would adjust to being a family of four; how you could open your heart enough to these tiny humans; how you would let this tiny baby boy know how much he meant to you while trying to meet the daily demands of being an already mother, wife and career woman.

Look at you, mama. Two years later and now you can’t fathom what your life would be like if you’d never had your son.

And speaking of that – remember how you hoped beyond all hopes that your “he” would be another “she.” You were so scared of parenting a young son; in fact, you still are a little bit, aren’t you? But the moment they laid your beautiful little boy in your arms, nothing else seemed to matter, did it? It didn’t matter what he was, just that you loved him and he needed you.

Try and remember that, mama. He needs you. Your tumbling-two-year-old toddler needs you now and will the rest of his life. When he’s struggling with a homework assignment, going to his first dance or picking the person he wants to spend the rest of his life with, he’s going to need you. Even though he seems like his own little person already, he will always need you – if only for the fact that you are his mother.

I know he doesn’t seem like your little baby anymore. He doesn’t coo – but “oooohs;” he doesn’t have that lopsided grin – but a bright, beaming smile; he doesn’t giggle – but boisterously laughs. I know that it’s scary because it feels like he might be your last baby – although you “know” he isn’t one anymore, but he is mama. He will always, always be your baby. Even once he’s had babies of his own, he’ll still be your baby boy. No one will ever take that way from you.

Remember mama, even though you find yourself longing for the days of sweet little baby toes, tiny baby clothes and even those marathon-nursing sessions where it seemed like your boobs were never actually in your shirt, there was a time when you were wishing for him to be two, when you were wishing for him to start becoming the tiny human he is. And the tiny human he is – is absolutely amazing.

He doesn’t love you like he did when he was born. What was once a familiar, safe love, is now a choice of love. Remember when he was a tiny baby and he’d grin and flail his arms as you came up to him? You used to melt over that teeny weeny smile. Do you know what’s even better than that, mama? When your son runs into the kitchen yelling “Mama, mama, what you doin?” And after listening to your long-winded reply you ask him “Brae, what are you doing?” And he walks up, wraps his arms around your legs, leans and says “lovin mama.”

Yeah, babies may have that intoxicating scent, but look what you have, mama. You have words. You have actions. You have a little boy who is absolutely head over heels for you. And he always will be.

Just know the road is going to be long ahead, but it’s going to be more than worth it. And regardless what the future holds for your family, revel in the amazing things this little boy has brought to your life, the love he has taught you, shown you, made you feel. Remember he brought you these things not because he is your first son or your last “baby,” but because he is Braeburn Abbot and he is every bit of everything wonderful in this world – in fact, he is your world – whether he's two months old or two years old.

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  1. Happy birthday to your little boy. Its hard when they get older, but boy does it keep you on your toes!