Today I woke up as the mom of a 5-year old. It shouldn’t feel that much different than yesterday, but it does. Because for some reason to me, 5 is a huge milestone. My little one will go from being a preschooler to a grade schooler. Lights are starting to turn on and the world is becoming a bigger place with bigger opportunities—and also bigger risks. But that’s what the last 5 years have been for…to prepare him for this exciting world he’s going to continue to discover. Only now it will be with a little less hand holding. And, quite honestly, it’s bittersweet that he seems up for the challenge.
I look forward to what the year ahead holds, but for now I want to capture and celebrate the things I cherish about Big, and who he is in this fleeting moment.
I celebrate the little boy who continues to sleep with a bed full of stuffed animals (who must be tucked in just so…even if it means he gets no pillow himself). And I celebrate the big boy who suddenly wants to read to me at bedtime (and is getting pretty good at it).
I celebrate the little boy who asks me if Santa’s elves are the ones singing on his paper guitar the man in the red suit brought him. And I celebrate the big boy who follows up that very question by shouting at his growling brother, “Little, dragons are just imaginary!”
I celebrate the little boy who still says ‘two-th’ and ‘three-th’ instead of ‘second’ and ‘third’. And I celebrate the big boy who said ‘restaurant’ clearly for the first time recently (but don’t think I’ll let him forget that it was ‘restraunk’ for years).
I celebrate the little boy who still loves to sing Twinkle, Twinkle and If You’re Happy and You Know It. And I celebrate the big boy who now wants Katy Perry and Pink on his birthday CD (don’t worry friends, I’m keeping it G rated).
I celebrate the little boy who can’t get to the window fast enough to watch the garbage man on Thursday mornings. And I celebrate the big boy who’s starting to become interested in words like engineer (Cousin Mugg and Carolline, we’re going to need your help with this one).
I celebrate the little boy who still loves to hold my hand when I’m walking him into school. And I celebrate the big boy who’s all too often saying things like, “Oooh, remember when I was a kid? I used to love those!”
I celebrate the little boy who’s still too shy to talk to strangers (even though it can make me crazy at times). And I celebrate the big boy who suddenly can’t wait to get up in front of his class to share—or even read (well, sort of).
I celebrate the little boy who cried in my arms last night when I told him I couldn’t go to school with him after all today because of my bed rest restrictions. And I celebrate the big boy who gave me a confident kiss and ran out the door to share his special day with his friends.
I celebrate the little and big boy who cares so deeply about everything—from loved ones to strangers to dead Christmas trees to landfills to getting dressed first. I celebrate his serious, cautious side and I celebrate his fun-loving, knock-knock joke telling side. I celebrate his physical confidence, his curiosity and his expressive blue eyes. I celebrate who he is and who’s he’s made me and our family.
Happy birthday to my not-so-little, but oh-so-wonderful Big!