My dearest Jackson,
I hardly know where to begin. In just a few short hours you will officially be a one year old. I can hardly believe that this first year has already come to an end. Just a year ago your daddy and I were scrambling, eagerly awaiting your arrival and a little scared at what it meant to be parents. We were so excited when you (finally) made your appearance! Our perfect little baby boy! You've been nothing but a constant source of joy since day one.
We watched, through sleep-deprived eyes, as you achieved all of those firsts -- first smile, first time sitting up, first time you pulled yourself up, first hug, first step. I cried the first day of daycare, although I knew it would be so good for you to have that social interaction and stimulation. I cheered you on with every new accomplishment. I always will. Anytime you need a cheerleader, I'll be first in line -- with a big, embarrassing banner.
I do miss that tiny little baby we brought home from the hospital, that little munchkin that curled up on my chest. Those were such precious moments that I didn't realize would fly by like they did. Now you are constantly moving and oh so close to being an official walker. You chase the cats around the house with wild abandon. You love to dig through your toy bin to find just the right thing to play with. You also love to pull books from the bookshelf onto the floor, much to the chagrin of your father. The moments you sit still long enough for a little cuddle are few and far between. You are really growing up. It's a little bittersweet but I know the future holds wonderful things for you.
Little Man, I want you to know how much you are loved, unconditionally and from the very bottom of my heart. You have changed my life forever. Who knew one little 9 pound baby could wield so much power. Years from now, when you're rebelling and being all kinds of independent, know that I still love you just as much as the first second I saw you... just as much as the first time you grasped my finger with your tiny hand. When you grabbed that finger, you grabbed my heart. You still have it. You always will.
So, on your first birthday, my wish for you is this -- may your life be as blessed as mine is because I have you in it.
Happy birthday my sweet little boy!
With all the love in the world,