I sat up in the night, breathing, pacing, wondering if this would finally be the day I would meet you. Earlier your Daddy and sister and I had gone out. I chose a rocking chair for your nursery. I got my hair cut. We went out to eat. All the while I felt you wanting out.
In the morning, your grandparents arrived. They sat at the table and colored with Ella. Your Daddy took me walking in the neighborhood. It was a beautiful late spring day - the first of June. No better day to have a baby boy.
I actually watched you being born - something I wasn't ready to do when Ella was born. It was amazing - watching you come into the world as I worked so hard to make it happen. The doctor was worried about you getting enough oxygen, but I was able to hold you for a moment, and kiss your little head.
Five-o-five pm. No better time to have a baby boy. The doctor's job done, you wrapped in your new cocoon of blankets, your Daddy went to find me something to eat. There we were - just you and me. I fed you for the first time, and sang to you. ('Happy Birthday', and 'The Moment I Saw You'.) I will remember that moment for all of my life.
People always tell you that having a child changes your life, but I think you changed my life even more than Ella did. I thought having a second would be a piece of cake, but it was difficult on me. You suffered though six months of reflux. You cried and cried. You wouldn't eat. And yet through it all you were healthy, and gained weight incredibly well. Always strong, always growing.
And now here you are - so rough-and-tumble. Throwing things, not out of anger or frustration but out of sheer joy. Screaming to hear your own voice, excitement on every inch of your tiny face.
You started climbing before you started walking. (Your Daddy and Grandpa couldn't be prouder.) You are so loving and sweet. You are Ella's shadow - the Max to her Ruby, the Boots to her Dora.
She loves you so much. She will scream out in horror "My brother!" when you are hurt. She works very hard at making you happy when you cry. She checks me to be sure that what she gets, you get too.
I see you melt your Daddy's heart daily. You are his little guy, and he aims to teach you everything he knows. I watched you just this evening playing in the back yard. You ran around grinning, he chased you. Your shorts fell down around your ankles and you pointed to them, looking worried. Daddy rescued you and pulled them back up. You threw yourself against his leg in an appreciative hug, and were off running again. Daddy the hero.
As for me, well... my feelings for you Son, can not be put into words. The moment I first looked into your eyes I felt you were an "old soul", and I knew you would teach me just as much as I would teach you. We learn from each other every day. I look at you and am instantly happy. My resolve to make you sleep in your own bed melts away when you climb into bed with me and snuggle in with that smile on your face. I want you to experience everything. I want to protect you from everything. I am so lucky just because you are mine.
And so today you are two. (Coincidently, you just learned to say two.) Two years ago today. It seems like forever ago and yesterday all at once. A true blessing is what you are to me, and to anyone who meets you. Alexander the Great you are. It is no accident we gave you such a strong, handsome name - it fits you perfectly.
I am so proud of you. I am so in love with you. No better boy to have than you.
Where did you come from, baby dear?
Out of the everywhere into here.
Where did you get your eyes so blue?
Out of the sky as I came through.
What makes the light in them sparkle and spin?
Some of the starry spikes left in.
Where did you get that little tear?
I found it waiting when I got here.
What makes your forehead so smooth and high?
A soft hand stroked it as I went by.
What makes your cheek like a warm white rose?
I saw something better than anyone knows.
Whence that three-cornered smile of bliss?
Three angels gave me at once a kiss.
Where did you get this pearly ear?
God spoke, and it came out to hear.
Where did you get those arms and hands?
Love made itself into hooks and bands.
Feet, whence did you come, your darling things?
From the same box as the cherubs' wings.
How did they all just come to be you?
God thought about me, and so I grew.
But how did you come to us, you dear?
God thought about you, and so I am here."