Wonder why I’m forever calling my son “crazy” or my little “wild card”? Wonder why I have an abundance of gray hairs? Well, you’re about to witness the reason.
I asked Big T to sit down so I could asked him some questions. I showed him last year’s birthday interview to refresh his memory of the process, and I incentivized his participation with a bribe of an extra birthday gift.
The result? Well, for one, an extremely frustrated mom.
He wouldn’t sit still and answer my questions. I asked the same thing over and over because he insisted on being difficult. A week went by and I left the video alone before I finally sat down to edit it. Expecting to be utterly disappointed with the result.
But as I pulled up his interview, I couldn’t stop laughing. Yes, he was all over the place. And yes, he was being so silly, and difficult and just… HIMSELF. Why should I expect him to be sit still serious when that’s absolutely not him?
I told my husband about my revelation and he told me something I’ll never forget.
“The point isn’t to get perfect answers, it’s to capture his personality. And you did that.”
This last year with you has been full of surprises. That’s because you surprise me daily. The things that come out of your mouth, and the ways you try to shock me.
The most common word I use to describe you is “weird” I know I shouldn’t do that. It’s probably not great for your complex, but I often don’t know how else to put words to the way you are.
“My wildcard” is another term I sometimes use. Because you’re so unpredictable. For others–Your teachers, babysitters, and friends–you’re an angel. They haven’t a clue about the side I see. But I guess I should be glad you save your silly side for us.
I think part of the reason I find you a little odd is because you’re nothing like me. Which if course is totally ok. But you’re also nothing like anyone. You’re so hard for me to describe, define, and predict. But I’m going to try.
One thing I do know is you’re not shy. That’s evident every time we go to the store together. It’s gotten to the point where we order our groceries online and pick them up, or take turns going to the store without you because every trip with you is like a comedy show. You say hello to anyone and everyone. You strike conversations with complete strangers about the weather, your shirt, their hair, my shoes, or bodily fluids. Or sometimes you’ll just chase people. Yes, actually chase them down the aisles, telling them to come back. Occasionally you’ll do this while roaring like a dinosaur.
I underestimate you all the time. Maybe it’s because you’re my youngest. I forget you can say and do things on your own.
You build train tracks with ease now and they’re almost never sitting on the floor. You take unit blocks and build your tracks as high as you can. We know better than to try to help, or ever take down one of your creations. While you’re extremely independent when it comes to construction, you can’t stand being alone.
We’ve given up on trying to put you to sleep in your room. You’d come into ours in the middle of the night anyway. Instead now you’ve set up camp on a little mat at the foot of our bed. Your sister is often alongside you.
You love jokes. You may not understand the process of a knock knock joke but you try anyway. And you never seem to tire of the “high five!” “too slow” trick. Laughing hysterically every time I miss.
You don’t like to color, draw, or anything like that unless it involves Lightning McQueen. But you love playing with cars, dinosaurs, and riding your bike. Last year we started hiking together. In the beginning you didn’t like it, but you’ve really come around. You look forward to exploring places with water you can play in.
I can see you trying to figure out the world, and understand how things work. You ask more and more questions every day, and you have the best memory. You always remember where you put things, and places we’ve been.
My favorite quality about you however, has got to be your kindness and sensitivity. You’ll act all big and tough most of the time but the second your sister is actually hurt, or crying, you’re the first to run by her side to help. You cried more when she got her shots than when you got your own.
As a toddler you’d play by yourself for a little while, then come over to my nap to snuggle for a bit. You still do that, and I love it.
“I missed you Mommy!” You still say that to me days after coming back from a trip, or when I get back from the store.
You’re everything I never knew I’d wanted, yet exactly what I need. My sweet little boy.
I love you so much and I can’t wait to see what this new year of life holds for us.
PS: When your party VIP list only included members of our family, we decided to skip a party and just have fun with you. Here is how we celebrated your birthday this year.
PPS: It’s so hard narrowing down a few favorite photos of you from the last year so I’m going to share a bunch. I especially love the one of us together on the escalator. I believe we rode it up and down 692 times that day.
I'm a part-time journalist, full-time wife and mother striving to make the world a better place and inspiring others to do the same. This is the space where I share my journey in making the most of every day.