To my dear, sweet little fawn baby. You are one! I cannot believe it. Yesterday we celebrated your first rotation around the sun with a beautiful picnic at the park with so many dear to us. It was amazing to feel the love surround you and follow your wake. We based your party around the theme of Baby Batman, and I made you a suit to wear for the occasion. And a cake. A really kick-ass cake (i’m your mum, I can say that!). While everything came together for the day, I am still in denial that you are one. I just cannot fathom that you are no longer that tiny mewing baby in my arms, rather a 10kg whopper of an almost-toddler!
This year has been such a whirlwind of emotions, lessons, time moving fast, time moving slow, confusion, joy, happiness… so many variables.
We have explored health concerns, had many, many, many hospital visits and admissions, saw more doctors than we had hoped to see, and only had a few answers. Some big (22q13.32 Dup), some not so big (croup!). It would be easy to say your first year has been defined by the numerous visits, but that is not the case at all.
This year can easily be defined by one thing. You are The Best Baby Ever(TM). And it is not just mother’s bias.. just ask anyone who has met you. They all agree that you are cruisey, smilie, loving, excitable, cute, mischief, cheeky… and so much more.
You are a baby (child?) who adores music. If you are upset, which is rare, we need only turn music on really loud, or start singing. There is something about a melody that just draws you in and casts a magic spell over you. In fact, it is in your bones so much that you are already bopping and dancing when music is on around you. You cannot help but move and embrace the rhythm. And the joy in your face is mesmerising.
You learnt the art of crawling on boxing day, and you have not stopped moving since. After all of the concerns with your milestones early on, you have simply moved on from there and kept going, hitting them all right on cue. You love playing chase, cruising furniture, and pulling everything out from where ever it is meant to be… two million times a day!
And as you grow and develop I see the relationship between Tara and yourself forming and getting stronger. She wants to smother you at times, and at other times does not want to know you. We are always hearing “I want to Hug.My.BROTHER!” or “He is my BROTHER! Let me TOUCH HIM!” If only she would choose opportune moments in which to get so firey over your bond. But I cannot help smiling and bursting with love and pride when I see the two of you snuggled into the same bed. I am sure the time is going to come sooner, rather than later, for you to move out of the cot and into a toddler bed in Tara’s room. She is aching for that time, while still wanting the freedom of being alone.
You keep us all on our toes, and in doing so you have carved your own place into this family, and this community around you. I was so worried that you would be born into the shadow of your brother, but the light in your heart literally has you bursting in light.
That is not to say that we have forgotten Avery this year. You are often found staring at his photo, and you are always playing with his suitcase. As time goes on he will become part of your every day vocabulary – especially if I continue to call you him. I don’t do it often, and when I do I am immediately checked into line by my own heart. But I don’t want you to see fear or anguish when you hear his name. You will learn joy and laughter when we talk about him.
I cannot believe a year has gone since you made your entrance into this world. Silently, scaring my heart. But you do things your own way. You have a will and a boldness about you, that is quiet like a lion before it pounces. You stare and watch, take things on board, and then attack with cuteness and bravado.
You are such a blessing. And we are so lucky to have you in our lives. Thank you for picking us as your family. We love you beyond words.
Much love always my sweet boy Caelan.