You don’t realize it right now, but at 12:44 p.m. you turned two years old. It’s hard to believe. I remember when you first came into this world. I held you after the nurses wiped down your perfect, little newborn body, all 7 pounds, 7.7 ounces (but they rounded it up to 8 oz.). I followed you to the nursery as you got your first bath and felt the warmth of a swaddling blanket. I fed you, changed you, and drove you home, and I’ve been your cook, valet, and chauffeur ever since.
I love you, and I always will.
You don’t have to do anything to earn or deserve my love. You have it unconditionally, now and forever. I love you with 100% of my heart right now, and there’s nothing you can do that will change that. You’ll make your share of mistakes as you grow, but I’ll always be there to love and encourage you. I never want you to feel like you can’t be yourself because you’re trying to live up to someone else’s expectations, including my own. I will always be your biggest fan and loudest supporter.
I see so much greatness in you.
Your smile conveys love and joy, your sweetness compassion and tenderness. But there’s also a mischievousness about you that is simultaneously adorable and trying. I know you’re just testing your limits, and it helps that you’re cute as a button. I’ve learned to cherish these days because, like your sister, you’re growing up fast. One day I’ll wake up and discover that you’re graduating high school and moving out on your own. Until then, it’s my responsibility and honor to train you up in the way you should go, so that when you have matured with a career and a family of your own, you will not depart from it.
I know you cherish your sister.
Seeing you playing with Elizabeth thrills my soul. Hearing the two of you laugh together is the most beautiful sound I know. I pray you’ll love and cherish each other for as long as you both live. I never spent much time around kids before I became a father, but I’ve quickly realized how blessed I am to have you and your sister. You two are such amazing and loving children, and I certainly can’t take all the credit for that. I’m grateful for the many loving people who surround you each day and fill in the gaps where I fall short. I’m only one person and cannot provide for all your needs, but thankfully, I was never meant to.
Your mother loved you, too, you know.
Mommy loved you with a mother’s heart, and she was so proud of you. She cherished every moment she had with you, from the first time she felt you in her womb to her last days on this earth. Please know that she always loved you. I’m so sorry that you will never have a deeper relationship with her. You probably don’t remember her, so maybe you won’t feel like something is lacking in your life. I hope that is the case, but the truth is I don’t know what your life will be like without her. I don’t have all the answers, and I never will. But I do have faith, and Mommy wanted you to have that, too.
So here’s my birthday wish for you, my dear, precious, little Ian.
Just as I pray every night that God will continue to send people into your life to love you, so, too, do I pray that you will always feel the constant and unconditional love of Jesus. Love is the only thing that really matters, and I pray you will possess it in abundance. Let your love be patient and kind, never boastful or self-seeking, but always joyful, kind, good, and faithful. So long as you do those things, you will know Peace and Truth, and His love never fails.
Happy Birthday, little buddy!