In just a few more days you will be nine years old. I don’t know where the time went.
On Wednesday, I took you shopping for your birthday.
You picked out a pink backpack with a big picture of Barbie on it. I am ashamed of myself for momentarily trying to interest you in Spiderman instead. I was only thinking about the other kids and what they might say to you at school. Kids can be so mean.
I am not surprised that you like pink. You always have, so really it made perfect sense to put Barbie in the cart and bring her home.
You also chose a baby doll. A big one. You lifted her from the shelf and put her carefully into the back of the giant plastic truck you had chosen a moment before.
You kept a watchful eye on the doll through the entire store and several times you whispered “be careful with the baby.”
You stroked her bald head and patted her arms. Twice you picked her up and gave her a hug. You are sweet and gentle and kind and I am reminded that you should have had a sibling.
You have been hugging everyone lately, even complete strangers.
On Wednesday, you sidled up to a large man in the line next to us and hugged his arm. He looked down with surprise and confusion, but he smiled and told you his name when I instructed you to introduce yourself. You hugged him again and had to shake his hand and smell him before we left. He was amused and very nice to you.
On our vacation, you were fascinated with Great Grandma Ila. You helped to push her wheelchair and you carefully studied her face and hands and arms. I think she liked that you were so interested. It was really your first chance to spend extended time with someone of her generation. The two of you have kindred, sunny spirits.
Today, your cousins and three school friends came over to help you celebrate. We rented a jumpy, bought a cake, picked up two dozen helium balloons, and we called for too much pizza. The group was smaller this year, but you didn’t know the difference. A couple of cousins, a bit of sugar and some good old fashioned exercise, and you were properly birthdayed…if that’s a word.
Last night, once you went to bed, Daddy and I wrapped your gifts and finished picking up the house. I sliced some veggies and Daddy got the cooler ready for ice. We blew up a zillion balloons and left them in the hallway outside your bedroom door. Then we collapsed. We were exhausted, but happy, because you are the best reason to do these things.
We love you, little boy. You are a gift to us, everyday.
Pictures sometime later in the week.
Happy Birthday Party.