You were born 5 years ago today, my first baby. I have not been able to stop thinking about the fact that it was exactly 5 years ago that I became a mother. You made me a mother. Your entrance into this world changed me forever, in a way that I could not even begin to understand then.
We wanted you. Desperately. We waited for so long and went through so much. As much as your Daddy and I loved each other, as happy as we were, as blessed as we felt, we knew there was something missing. While we were going through that time, we didn't understand why.
Then you came. And we knew.
All along, all that time, we had been waiting for you.
You came along and joined our little twosome and rocked our world. We weren't even sure what to do with you. We didn't recognize our lives, our selves, or each other. Let's just say that there was an adjustment period. But you were fantastic. Maybe you (or someone greater) knew that we weren't quite able to handle too much then, and so you were The Easiest Baby On Earth. You slept. You ate. You sat happily for hours staring at the wall. By the time you were two, we thought we were surely the best parents ever, since we had obviously been fully responsible for this little being who was so perfectly behaved and easy-going and smart. (We know better now...as evidenced by many posts on this very blog referencing playground punching and general acts of absolute insubordination....at least you waited until we had recovered from the postpartum, grown up, and gotten a better handle on the challenges of parenting.)
You are growing up to be quite a kid. You're wicked smart and always trying to be one step ahead of everyone. If you apply your skills of manipulation and persuasion to good rather than evil, you will undoubtedly be incredibly successful. You seem to have inherited your father's goofy sense of humor but my fear of embarrassment. You like things a very particular way (how I wish, on those mornings when we're running late because you've had to adjust your socks 18 times so the stitching lands just so along your toes, that I could tell you that I still do that before a run). You still have not figured out that you are not, actually, the center of the universe. You finally seem to have taken a sincere liking to your baby brother, and when I see you helping him, trying to explain something to him (like last night when you were showing him how to draw a clown), it makes my heart swell up with a love, gratitude, and relief that I can not put into words. Your manners are near perfect. Your sense of humor, flawless. You are, quite simply, a really cool kid (which is a good thing, since you refuse to allow us to call you "cute", only "cool" or on occasion, "handsome").
There's something special about being the first born. You were the one who Changed Us...the one who turned us into Mama and Dada. You squeezed your way in to our little cocoon for two, and actually made us want to slide over and make room. You are amazingly special, Ben Kincaid. We love you "sooooo much" and "all the way to the back of the moon."
Then and now...