My baby is not a baby anymore. We went to his one year check-up today.
Introduced table food? Yes (Like six months ago. Baby food is too much work. Sorry, Jack.)
Talking? Barely. (Says 4 words, signs 5.)
Sleeping? Eh...(Between teething, ear infections, and mom becoming a total softy, I'm up more than I'd care to admit.)
You got a passing grade. The doctor said you looked good, needed a few shots, and we could be on our way.
I know these doctors see a thousand kids a day. They know all the milestones and markers, signs and symptoms. But they don't know you.
Not like mommy does. Can I take a minute to tell you about your little one-year-old self?
When I open your door in the morning you are standing and bouncing, reaching your tiny arms toward me. What a wonderful way to start the day!
You still take a "bah-bah," as you like to call it, filled with soy milk (since you are allergic to cow's milk). You love to eat and throw food. Most of your meals end up on the floor. After you've had your fill, you sign "finished" and eagerly await your release from your highchair so you can wreak havoc on the rest of the kitchen, emptying the cabinets, raiding the pantry, searching for bits of food on the floor.
You love to be tickled. You giggle uncontrollably when your brother plays peek-a-boo with you in the van. You smile when you see your sister. You call for me all day long, "Mama, Mama, MAMA!!!" You give the best hugs, wrapping your little arms tightly around my neck and laying your head on my shoulder. You are a cuddle bug.
Your nickname is Coo-coo-nu-nu. Parker gave it to you a few months ago. No one really knows why, but we all use it now. Sometimes it gets shortened to "kook" or "kookster."
You love to climb stairs, suck on rocks, and splash in the toilet. (We keep all the lids down now.) You are so happy and charming. Everyone comments on your sweet disposition. I love taking you places. You flirt with everyone, smiling, shyly looking away, only to smile at them again and giggle. Oh, you are trouble.
You have stolen my heart. Thankfully, I have more than one! Parker and Maddie were just a bit concerned before you were born about how mommy could have enough love for another baby. I explained that God gives mommies (and daddies) a brand new heart each time they have a new baby, just for that baby. I've got several in my chest these days. Perhaps that's why it's hard to breathe when I look at the three of you. My hearts swell and my chest tightens when I think of just how blessed I am to be called mom, to get to watch the story of your life unfold, and even get to mould it in my own little way.
I love you, Coo-coo-nu-nu. Happy birthday, dear boy.