When I found out I was pregnant, I crossed my fingers and wished for a girl.
I already had a little girl who was bright, sweet, and easy to deal with. It was a fear of the unknown more than anything, most likely, I already knew what it was like to braid hair and purchase anything with a Disney princess or Dora the Explorer on it. I didn’t want to venture into the world of rough and tumble boys who had equipment that I wasn’t familiar with and didn’t know how to use.
But, as we now know, Aidan did turn out to be a little boy. And I couldn’t be more in love with him.
Three years ago today I held him in my arms for the first time. I’d like to say it was love at first sight, and of course I loved him because he was mine and he was beautiful, but to truly LOVE someone you have to know them. Over the next few months we got to know each other very well, spending many sleepless nights together because he was a fussy baby and not easily calmed.
Eventually I learned what made this little human being happy, which was mostly being near me. Through weeks of trait and error, hitting and missing, sling shorting between extreme elation and soul crushing frustration, I learned who he was and how to love him. I found out he really liked his hair played with, he loved to be sung to whether it be Twinkle Twinkle Little Star or Adele. His favorite place to sleep was at my side, tucked under my chin, his little chubby hand firmly grasping my shirt as if to say “you aren’t going anywhere”.
At the hospital they said not to fall asleep with the baby in bed, that he could be rolled over on and smothered. I knew without a doubt that I would never crush my son, that his place was supposed to be next to me, him being there made us both the happiest and most comfortable.
So fast forward three years and he’s a little boy now, and we have to teach him to be a little man. How to be brave, how to give love, how to take in the world around him and make sense of it. He calls me his girl, and that is probably more true than anything else. The amount of love he had for me is directly related to the amount of love I have for him. Kids are simple. They don’t love you because they think they should, they don’t love you because they HAVE TO. They love you because you’ve earned it, and I have never felt more entitled to anything else in the world. His love is my reward every day. All the hard work, all the sacrifice, the lack of personal time. It’s all worth it when he puts his arms around me and calls me his girl, when he tells me he loves me, when he says he doesn’t want me to leave.
So I not only want to say Happy Birthday to this child, but I want to say “thank you”. There is no closer, more unique relationship than a mother and her son. Everything is new to the both of us, but no two people know each other more than we do. We learned each other in the very late hours of the night and the very early hours of the morning, we spent days together trying to find our rhythm and our rhyme. Now that we’ve found it, we can never lose it.