to my daughter on her first birthday
Well, kid, we made it. One year down and a lifetime to go. We both made it through this first year relatively unscathed, minus a dislocated shoulder (from carrying you, ahem), some sleep deprivation and several bite marks for me.
In some ways, I can’t believe it’s been a year already; in other ways, I feel like you’ve been in my life forever.
I look forward to seeing your grumpy little face every morning and to ending my day with you in my arms. It’s been a year and I haven’t spent a night away from you yet.
(Though, don’t get me wrong, sleeping in past 7 am just once would be fantastic.)
You’re a smart, stubborn, sweet, funny, energetic, empathetic, inquisitive little girl. You’re my little buddy. You drive me nuts. You crack me up.
At one year old,
- You love to climb up and down the steps, and you clap for yourself every time you make it to the top or bottom.
- You love to take walks in the park in your jogging stroller. Sometimes you sit forward so precariously, curiously looking at all that’s going on. Sometimes you lounge back so far with one arm behind your head that I feel like I should be fanning you and feeding you grapes.
- You love to play in the water, whether it’s a pool, Sally’s water bowl or the toilet.
- You hate to be told no, especially when I’m pulling you away from Sally’s water bowl or the toilet.
- You make your “bull face” on command, breathing hard in and out your nose. And you know you’re hilarious when you do it.
- You love to eat, grunting appreciatively and slamming on your highchair tray when you’re enjoying something. You let me know you’re finished by throwing food on the floor (thanks).
- You like to point at everything, especially people, almost as if you’re acknowledging them and say “hey, you!”
- You tip your sippy cup of water back with one hand, which makes me laugh every time.
- Your excitement is infectious when you recognize Murray’s voice at the beginning of Sesame Street.
- You love to dance, often by putting one hand up in the air (like you just don’t care). Doesn’t matter if it’s Mozart on one of your toys or Macklemore on the radio.
- You aren’t walking yet, but you’re damn close. You’ve taken about three wobbly steps into someone’s arms for several days now.
- You sleep almost 12 hours every night (thanks. for real.)
- You are a great sharer already and love to offer up your Nuk to someone who may need it.
- My favorite part of every day is seeing your smiling face and you waving to me when I walk in the door after work.
It’s been an honor and my joy to watch you grow and learn every day. I’m a better person for knowing you. I can’t wait to see you turn into the fantastic human you’re already showing signs of becoming. Here’s hoping I don’t mess you up too badly in the process.
I love you, baby girl. Happy First Birthday.
Oh, and don’t let anyone tell you differently: you look just like me.