I write letters to my children on their birthdays. Here is last year’s letter to Aria.
Happy 3rd birthday!
We celebrated your birthday during a weekend camping retreat with our church community, with your requested dessert, cake and berries. Now, in your parlance, “I FREE! I not a baby, I a toddlah.” You have said that to friends, family, and strangers in the grocery store.
It seems like everywhere you go, you find magical moments that delight you. You are our unicorn child, spreading infectious joy around you. You hear songs, and exclaim, “Oh, I LOVE this song!” even though you haven’t heard it before. You meet a new person, and immediately call them your friend. You tell knock-knock jokes that don’t make any sense at all, yet still manage to make people burst out laughing.
You have so many things that you love. Puzzles, picking out books at the library, playing at the park, getting chased by our dog, splashing in the waves at the beach, and dancing to Michael Jackson songs.
Sometimes you run too fast and fall right onto your face. But what’s childhood without a few bloody noses and scraped knees? Keep running. I love your wild, free spirit.
My favorite thing to do with you is to give you tight squeezy hugs, kiss your chubby toddlah cheeks, and soak in the moment that I already know I’ll miss when it’s gone.
There is a special place in my heart for you, my daughter.
I love you a whole lot.