A Letter of Love to My Babes on their First Birthday.

I now realize that I have been walking around my whole life, while my heart carried two little pockets sewn onto it. And when you were born, the essence of both of you floated effortlessly into those pockets and filled up my heart, such that every time I hold you and you smile at me or put your arms around me and nestle your head into my chest, I literally feel tiny explosions of joy from the inside out.

In your sweet innocence and wonder in everything you experience, I find you come as close to perfection as I could possibly imagine in any human. You see the world with confined acquaintance and limited understanding of its complexity and yet, maybe it is through your eyes that the world is in impeccable harmony with all that is.

One of my favorite moments of the day is coming to wake you in the morning. I pick you up and instantly, with your sleepy eyes, you smile and search for your sister. “Buenos dias mi hermana!” I say, and you both begin to giggle and babble and I am in bliss.

Sometimes in the middle of the night, you wake up with night terrors. Most of the time I let you soothe yourself back to sleep, but sometimes I just want to be the one who comforts you back to that deep, twitching slumber. To feel you breathing with your whole body as you lean into me and to know that all you needed was your mama.

It is an epic responsibility to be charged with your safety and care on a daily basis. To know that everything I do, whether right or misguided will impact you in some way. There is strength in my desire to protect you, but not too much. To teach you how to be kind, considerate, independent, conscious and loving people who regard all life with dignity and respect. I want to impart all the ways that there is so much more to life than staring at technology all day or test scores or even what everyone else has that you don’t. I want to show you how important it is to listen to your sister and everyone else and how valuable face to face communication still is. I want to teach you that you will always have more than you need and the value in giving to anyone who is in need.

I want to present you with a wide eyed view of the world and tell you that your life can be a manifestation of whatever you are big enough to dream. I want to see you running through the grass at Elm Flats chasing butterflies and looking up at the sky wondering what else is out there. I want to turn over rocks in remote corners of the world with you and watch as your eyes grow wide with fascination, wanting to taste and feel everything. I want to see how you learn to discern from what is valuable and needed and what is not.

But for right now, I am happy to bear witness to all of the tiny moments, such as which teeth will come in next, what your next word will be, when will be the day when you walk across the room grinning so big, your smile wraps around your head. When you will figure out the star goes in the star hole. When you will give each other your first hug. You already know how to give eskimo kisses and now I am just waiting for a really big slobbery kiss on the cheek.

You have so much love around you. Your tia and your grandma adore you and that abundance of love has brought all of us closer together as a family. You are the place where our attention is turned to, where our focus is on what is best for you.

On this, your very first birthday, I wish you all happiness and love and magical discoveries. You are so loved. Happy birthday #SydandSash.

~ Your adoring mama