Every time I sit down to write you this letter, I start to cry.
I am so, so proud of you. I am so moved by the amazing changes that we’ve seen taking root within you in the last week.
With the help of some amazing friends, you have opened the door into the realm of little-boyhood, and run right through.
5 days at Liam and Hazen’s house meant waking up and asking “Where are my fwends?”, and flying down the stairs to play in your pajamas. You had constant companions, new big brothers, and a bonus set of parents to add even more love to the mix…
You learned about hockey and tiny frogs. You began to explore on your own, running off to the playroom with the big boys and busying yourself with projects and games and imaginary worlds. You communicated with your friends in your own way, running past me to give a brief hello on your way to the next adventure.
You learned about action figures and “super-here-yoes”. You discovered Transformers and Star Wars. You realized that the games that were hiding within your imagination were the best ones to play. You grew confident, and even more curious, and you owned your own relationships with your buddies. But most importantly, you unearthed the little boy that was growing behind your baby smile.
You became a three year old, my sweet son.
You found beautiful friendships, and you blossomed next to the kindness of Mark and Tanya’s amazing boys. Their sweet spirits are unlike anything I’ve ever seen. They are mirrors of their parents, who welcomed us into their home and their lives, greeting us with late-night conversation, North Carolina BBQ, and some Southern (with a dash of California/Boston/Maine) hospitality.
We found the community that we had been looking for. We found the quiet moments that we had been missing. We found the joy and the laughter that sometimes gets overlooked in the hustle and bustle of the “everyday”. Mark and Tanya have always been special to us. Their kindness and humor and gentle wisdom have been a part of some pretty special moments in our lives. Every time we are with them, we ease in to the routine of old friends.
We laughed more, we loved harder, we played in the grass with sticks, we walked further, we had more ice cream, we took more detours. We found our family groove again, living beside the Johnson family. We had time to enjoy each other. And Max, you grew. You grew into a little boy who speaks sentences that we can all understand and marvel at. You learned to share and experience and welcome change. You ate chicken strips and drank chocolate milkshakes. You played in the North Carolina sunshine and slept through your first Southern thunderstorm. You made friends with “meow-meow” and learned the names of every superhero. You made string tightropes with Hazen and shared jumps on the trampoline. You loved on Tanya and basked in the glow of “mama-goodness” that overflows from her. You took Mark’s hand and made sure that he was watching as you “pwayed HOCK-eee” with Liam. You soaked in every minute of vacation time with your Daddy, and made sure that he knew that he was your favorite person on this earth.
These are your last weeks of being 2, Max. You are becoming the little boy that I always imagined you would be. You are entering this new world with a backpack of skills and traits and treasures from your toddlerhood. You have the same happy laugh and the same broad smile. You have the same excitement and the same energy. You have your kind, loving spirit and your belief in the goodness of this world. And you are ready. You are ready for boyhood, my beautiful, brilliant son. I am sure of it, because I’ve witnessed you welcoming 3 with open arms. These are the last weeks of two years old Max. In the last week, you have shown us that you’re ready for your next adventure. We are right here beside you, cheering you on and loving you, watching your journey unfold exactly the way it’s supposed to.
I love you so much, and I am so, so proud of you Max.