|Brother #1, Nephew #3, The Curly Blonde, and Willie. 2012.|
Dear Nephew #3,
You are such a good and smart boy, and I hope this letter finds you getting into a remote drawer where the contents are shiny, noisy, crunchy, and maybe even fluffy. I pray, from the bottom of my heart, that this letter finds you a healthy and happy almost 2-year old!
I was 12 years old when I first saw your mom walking down the hallways of 7th grade. She had the brightest, most mischievous, most innocent grin on her face, framed by all of those boingy, blonde curls. I see so much of her in you, already. She and I were instant friends. I was drawn to her by the chemistry of fireflies and contagious laughter and endless notes and letters and words.
We grew together and pushed each other away like the Arctic ocean and its icepack. We crashed and cracked and bonded. We crystallized and formed and melted. Somehow, we ended up in San Diego together as entry-level biologists and HR managers and marathoners and wine lovers. Your daddy, who just happens to be my little brother, married your mommy and moved down to San Diego too, and we had a fun decade of spider hunting and pool parties and grilling.
And then you were born! We all fell in love with you immediately. The thing I will always remember about seeing you in the delivery room for the first time, is how alert and quick you were to turn your head toward your mommy's voice when she spoke. You weren't sleepy; you wanted to see the world before your eyes even had time to adjust to it. And since then, you have been 100% this type of person.
I predict that you will always harbor the type of alertness that puts you in the path of the world before most others have time to catch up with you. But that is okay because you will have developed some kind of secret time machine which allows them to catch up with you and see what you see.
Mother's Day is fast approaching, and I know your mom is celebrating you and your journey into her life. She celebrates her life's changing viewpoints as she looks down from the mountain of you and your big, giant love for her. You have glorified her heart there in your bright, sunny meadow of little boy laughter.
As I think on the mountain of my own Mother's Day, your sweet cousin, little h jumps up and down on the couch, squealing wildly and throwing pillows like a crazed monkey-boy. I have taken a break from surprise-attacking him, as only hot lava monster mommas do, to write you this letter because I just wanted you to know how much I love your mom and you (and of course your dad and willie, too).