Today you are six years old. How in the world does this happen? Fifteen minutes ago you were a tiny (ok not so tiny) mewing nursling and now you're making your daddy light the candles on your cake 12 times.
What can I say about SIX? You've finished your first year of school, and you rocked kindergarden. You didn't meet all of your goals, but you made progress and quite frankly, that's all that matters to me. You loved your teachers and aides, and made friends with all of your classmates. You espeically became buddies with a couple of boys, Colin and Antoni. You also LOVED riding the bus. Your bus driver introduced you to pop music and you LOVE it. So we all suffer through bad music because you love to bop around and sing along to every song on the radio. It's crazy adorable. Oh, Ruby, the things we do for love.
Your speech and language is always developing, and though you're still far behind your 6 year old peers, you can communicate more and more what you need and think and it's quite amazing to behold. Somedays you even tell us about what happened at school. You love to describe what you see in the world around you, and as usual, it's always things I wouldn't have seen. You amaze me with your zest for life and for the beauty in the details.
We went to Maui again this year and you loved it. You swam in the ocean every day, marveled at the sunset and ate ice cream any chance you got. It was a great vacation, with some rough spots and challenging moments, but life wouldn't be life without those things. ALl in all we had a great time, and even enjoyed the flights to and from. You're quite the traveler, and I'm so proud of you.
We recently took another trip to Oaks Park, where you not only rode rides, but you rode them with out an adult accompaning you.
How amazing was that? You had SO much fun riding rides with your little cousin Karsen and every time you got off the ride you'd run up to me and say "I'm so proud of you!" because you were so proud of yourself. I was so proud of you for overcoming your fears and going for it. It was such a joy to see your excitement at each new ride, and you'd wave at us as you went around each time. You truly amaze me.
You've been working really hard at getting to the potty when you need to poop. (I'm sure some day you'll hate me for writing about this, but hey, it's all about you and how you're growing up). Somedays you try and try and then when it's actually time, you don't make it. Today, though, on your birthday, you not only pooped in the potty, you did it twice. Do you know how awesome that is? it's super awesome. It's taking a while for your brain and your gut to communicate about this stuff, but I think it's truly making the connection, and I'm so proud of you!
Today you spent the morning playing with your Grandma, then we ran some errands and then when your daddy got home from work, we went out for spaghetti and then came home for cake.
You loved blowing out the candles so much, that you did it about a dozen times. Oh the excitement you have for the littlest things.
My dear amazing Ruby, six years ago you came into this world, on your own terms, in your own time with your own agenda. In one crescendoing moment you made me a mama, something I had wanted for a long time and worked so very hard for. You have spent every day of these six years making me the person I am, it hasn't been what I pictured, and yet it has been amazing and insightful and I wouldn't change a thing about how we've grown together. Because of you, I am a better person, a stronger woman, and a more competent mother had you been anyone else.
Today was your last birthday as an only child. Soon you'll have a little brother or sister to keep you company, to annoy you and challenge you to rise to the occasion. I have no doubt the two of you together will keep me company, annoy me and challenge me to rise to the occasion of mothering the both of you, but if your sibling is anything like you, I will also be lucky enough to have so much love that I almost can't stand it.
Thank you for being my first baby, for introducing me to mamahood and for loving me with your huge huge heart. Thank you for the giant deep hugs you give me every day, for the sweet kisses you grace my face, hands and belly with, and for the heartfelt 'I love you so much!'s that I hear often. You are truly a wonder to behold, and I love you more than words can ever express.
All of my love, always, forever and unending, Mama