My darling monkey,
I have been pondering for days on the exact way I should begin your letter. Should I open with a tidbit about your blossoming creative imaginative play? Or a dissertation about the extraordinary intellectual leaps you are making? A list of ways in which your vocabulary is developing; for example, last week you used the word “melancholy” contextually correct. (MELANCHOLY!) Or how most people gasp when they hear you are just three after hearing how articulate, expressive and polite you are. (“What shall we do now, Momma?” or “I’m not quite ready, Momma” SHALL! QUITE!)
Or should I instead start this letter talking about your newfound love of artful self-expression? Your obsession with “writing letters.” Should I tell you about the ways your eyes light up when you see collage materials and glue on the table after naptime? Should I make jokes about your love affair with glitter? Should I tell you about the many, many afternoons you spend with a paintbrush in hand, painting picture after picture. Or perhaps, I should try and explain the sheer giddiness exuding from you when you cut the junk mail.
Maybe I should relay your love of ballet and tap. How you constantly dance around the room practicing first position and shuffle ball change as you sway your arms and move to whatever music you hear. Maybe I should discuss your obsession with all things fantasy – your fascination with your princess dresses to your constant appeals to go “mermaid watching.” Or maybe I should tell you how adorable it is seeing you mimic our daily activities – from seeing you sweep the back patio to making dinner for daddy with your play kitchen to giving your dolls a bath because they are “smelly.” Or maybe I should tell you how proud of you I was after your first swim lesson, you listened and followed directions and loved every second of being in the water, your first time without me.
Or maybe I should tell you how incredible it has been to see you grow as a loving big sister. Maybe I should tell you how much it makes my heart sing watching you love on Lily. Maybe I should tell you how you reached out and comforted her when she received her one-year vaccinations: “Sissy, it’s okay, be brave like me, I’ll hold your hand.” Your empathy astounds me.
Or maybe I should tell you how much joy it brings me to see your fascination with and connection with the outdoors. Maybe I should focus on how much I love our lazy sunny afternoons where we wander down to the green open space and watch the creek bubble by under the wooden bridge. Or how much we love to picnic, or watch your love of hiking and running and long walks develop. Or maybe I should tell you about the elaborate stories you concoct with only a single flower as your inspiration.
It’s all so amazing, so unbelievably amazing, that I cannot even begin to capture the magic of this age with you in words.
I love you more than all the stars in the sky and the water in the ocean.