Saturday, August 9, 2014

Dear Mads | One. Year. Old.

It's our birthday!

Dear Madmartigan Vaughn,

August is abuzz--with cicadas in the trees, hummingbirds at our feeder, the occasional fly at our windowsill--and today is an auspicious one.  It's your 1st birthday, my 30th birthday, and the wedding day of a friend of mine whom I've known since childhood.  Knowing this wedding was today and that we'd be joyously attending, we threw a little party to celebrate you and me (but, let's be honest, mostly you) last weekend.  A room full of people sang you the birthday song, and though you reached out to touch the burning dinosaur candles on your cake, you weren't all that interested in digging into the cake itself.  Ella, on the other hand, was thrilled to see that big mound of homemade banana/applesauce cakey goodness and cream cheese frosting.  She stood at the base of the high chair, stretched on her tip toes, and dug her fingers into as much of the cake as she could reach.

If you become a father one day, you may understand when I tell you I'm having difficulty processing this year and the very fact of you, in all your presence, your You-ness.  A couple years into my marriage with your Papa, the longing for a baby began to take hold of me.  I found myself awash with a white hot jealousy, an envy that would leave me light-headed and over-heated, every time I learned an acquaintance of mine was expecting--or even celebrities.  (I announced dramatically one evening in the car, "Beyonce is pregnant," and your dad glanced over at me, confused, as if I'd suddenly spoken Latin or Klingon.)  My mind had no way of fully grasping what it was my heart desired.  I didn't even understand what I was getting myself into, how my life would change, what a gift I was being given The Night of the Pee Stick, or the eight months of waiting that followed.  But now you are here, and the world looks different--better, brighter, sweeter, infinitely more precious.

Can you believe I didn't know if I even wanted to have a kid before I met your dad?  He knew, of course.  Your Great-Grandma Clacher always wanted to be a grandma, your father always wanted to be a father.  I, however, had all sorts of ideas about what I might be, but Mama wasn't always at the top of the list.  Now, of course, even on difficult days, being your mother feels like a role I was always meant to play, the most natural thing in the world.  A little over a year ago, your father told me his purpose on this planet is to create.  Mine is to nourish.  You've taught me so much about the world, it's wonder, and about me, about my sheer capacity for love. I can't thank you enough.

I'm completely in love with you, every day, more and more, ad infinitum dot com,

48 Weeks, Seedless Watermelon
49 Weeks, Misfit
50 Weeks, climbing on everything
51 Weeks, Extremely apathetic about the whole birthday cake thing.
52 Weeks!

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