This is a repost from Jay's fourth birthday last year...
When I look through slews of photos and think of my favorite memories it is the simple things that I am drawn to. It's the simple pictures I want to show. It is the simple things I want to share. It's the simple things that start routines and get your life together piece by piece. It's the simple things that morph into traditions.
Jay's fourth birthday was a special day and we celebrated with special friends. When he grows up he won't remember what was on his cake that year, what he received as gifts, maybe not even everyone who was there. He won't remember the plates, napkins, food, flowers, the little details that I just think "make" a great event...
He will remember that he was surrounded by people who make him feel special and loved. When he gets older he may not remember the details, but he will remember that parades and fireworks make something in him feel extra special. When he's grown and gone and "comes home" something about fresh flowers, tablecloths, and simple details will make him feel 'home'. He will remember that we ate meals together and went to church as a family. He will remember that his parents were best friends and bickered, like best friends do, but always made up quickly and never hesitated to apologize.
He will remember that when there was no thunder he played in the rain. As an adult, something about swimming, swinging high, riding his bike, playing catch, painting, jumping waves in the ocean will make him feel young again and he will crave these things.
Something inside of him will know that he wants to read to his children and give them owl, lion, Eskimo, butterfly, freckle and people kisses at bedtime and they will be surprised with his vast knowledge of nursery rhymes, "Wee Sing" tunes and Aesop Fables. It's the simple things that pass on and on through generations. It hurts my heart when I think that some children don't get these simple things. Making your child feel special and loved is our job as parents and, really, what a simple job that is.
I read a quote recently that I loved so much that I jotted it down..."Every child in the world deserves to have at least one person who is absolutely crazy about them."
One of my favorite books is Someday. I cry absolutely everytime I read it. Before his eyes close on his birthday we read a similar book that I gave him on his first birthday, On the Night You Were Born. Cover to cover. In the cover I had written a special message. Someday, when I'm not around, that book, such a simple thing, will mean so much and he "will remember me".
The wonderful, marvelous day you were born I became a mother and your dad a father. This was a special gift that not everyone gets to experience. It is a joy and love that is pure and selfless. We loved you the moment we found out about your little life, we rejoiced the day you were born and every day that love and joy grow and grow. You are so special.
Happy 1st Birthday,
Love, Mommy and Daddy