Oh how things have begun to change for you, my now 8 year old boy. This past year has been a journey of separation. Scary at times, I’m certain. You have become your own person. No longer choosing to follow in the footsteps of your big brother. Beginning to expand the friendships you make. Finding your voice in the crowd. Following your own dreams.
Today I look at you and realize that you are no longer the sweet baby that I once held in my arms and rocked to sleep. You are growing into an amazing young man. You are kind and compassionate. You still want to snuggle sometimes, but only on your terms. You still want to be tucked in every night and get that last hug and kiss. Now, though, you’d rather run off with friends or head outside to play than spend extra time with me. And, that’s ok. You are your own person now.
You have found a love for all things sports. You talk Lions with papa. You were excited to hang Tiger’s logos all around your room. You love watching the Walleye play. What a thrill it was for you to skate on the very ice you watch them play on – and then get to skate on that ice again with those very players. You want to try everything if it’s related to sports or outside. You skate and rollerblade and bike and fish and play catch and basketball and, and, and… I’m certain I’ll see very little of you indoors this summer, and I love that.
Words cannot begin to express the pride I feel at being your mom. That is what you call me now. Just mom. Gone are the days of mommy. Yet you say mom differently than you say most other words. I know that it still means something very special to you, even though you shortened the name to suit your independence. You still come running to me to tell me something great and look to me for that extra hug when something hurts or disappoints you.
How I have loved watching you grow over the past eight years. They have gone by far too quickly. I can’t begin to imagine what the next 8 years will look like. Happiest of birthdays my sweet baby. Thank you for the joys you bring to my life.