One morning, a few weeks ago, as you were heading downstairs with your Dad and Brother so I could get ready for work, you turned back toward the bed where I sat, looked at me.
“Kiss?” you asked tilting your head. And then you blew me one.
“Can I have a real one?” I asked, closing my fingers around the imaginary. You ran to me, hugged my neck and kissed me. I was smart enough to see my life as it really was in that moment. Even though I'd been up through the night with Naveen, even though I was dead tired and dreading the day ahead.
I saw real for one moment.
I saw that I was truly loved,
and I felt complete.
I saw that I was needed,
and I felt purpose.
I saw that we were raising you right,
and I felt accomplished.
And I thought about how you, one little person, only here four years, could define me this way.
I remember when you were born; the doctor announced that I had given birth to a toddler. “Welcome Magnus,” she joked. You were a big boy, refusing to come out even ten days past your due. And when they brought you to me, I was incredulous.
“This is you?” I asked. “You are the one?” And you let out a cry, as if to respond. “Yes, mama, this is me. I’m the one you’ve been waiting for.”
It was the day that changed everything, the day I no longer felt the loneliness that had plagued my orphan-self. You smoothed dull the pain of having lost so much so young.
And I reacted as a lioness might, growling when anyone came near you. I was possessive because I couldn’t figure out how it had happened. How someone so breathtaking could belong to me. My life had never promised such gifts. I’d wandered around empty and resigned myself to this fate. But you were glorious and perfect, things I’d never equated with myself.
You heralded the re-birth of me.
And so on this day can we celebrate you and me? You for bringing me joy and hope, for allowing me to re-live childish wonder, for teaching me who I really am, for letting me watch you unfold. For being proof that God does beautiful work.
And me, for embracing motherhood in all its splendor, for wanting more for you than I ever had, for realizing my love for you is never-ending, for striving to be my best self. For knowing how blessed I really am.
Happy birthday then.
To you and me, my big boy.
You and me over the years .