It is February 2nd, 2017. Unfortunately, our president is a mad man, but you don’t know that. Momma has been sick for about two weeks, but you don’t know that either. Momma and Daddy have been really, really worried lately. Worried about the world, the country, and our own place in both of those things as we navigate this unknown territory.
But you don’t know that.
Here’s what you know.
You have this super loud voice and you like to experiment with using it. People tell you you’re cute A LOT and you really like to hear that. You like your teachers and friends at Mother’s Day Out, but you like when momma comes to get you best. You know that if you hold out your hand to Bubba the labrador, and it has a goldfish cracker in it, he’ll lick your hand clean. You love that. You love to giggle at your dogs.
You know that momma doesn’t care if you splash water in the bathtub and some of it gets on her, but she’ll make a funny face anyway. You know that daddy has to leave a lot more often than momma does, and you really hate that. You know that when you come to visit grandma at work that grandma will let you play with her highlighters and paper at her desk. You know peanut butter and jelly sandwiches are meant to be dissected before being eaten. You know that momma hates it when you throw food on the floor, but you do it anyway.
You know that you get to nurse twice a day-before nap and before bed. You know that if the weather is nice and we’re not busy, momma will take you to the zoo. You know that you’re really not supposed to play with mommas phone, but you do it a lot anyway. You know that you love Sesame Street, but Elmo is your favorite. You know that Bruno Mars is the best music to dance to. You know how to take your diaper off and think it’s really funny to do so right after momma has put it on.
Here’s what you don’t know.
You don’t know that sometimes after you go to bed momma huddles under her covers and cries from the emotional weight and frustration of raising such a beautiful and strong willed child. You don’t know that sometimes, especially lately, momma feels so guilty for feeling ready to go back to work part time, because even though she loves you, momma misses her career and her independence. You don’t know that momma worries that you’re not talking very much and you’re almost 20 months old. You don’t know that it breaks momma’s heart that you still haven’t actually said “momma” or anything like it.
You don’t know how much thought goes into whether or not we should try to give you a brother or sister someday. You don’t know that momma has a really hard time loving her body the way it is, but she is trying really, really hard to set a good example for you about that. You don’t know that momma has had a taxing battle with her antidepressants these last few months, though maybe you’ve noticed that she’s finally starting to feel better, and she doesn’t have to sleep so much now.
You don’t know that momma cries because she can’t remember how it felt to hold you when you were only eight pounds, or ten, or even fifteen. You don’t know that even though momma is always ready for the quiet alone time she gets after she puts you down for the night, she always misses you and very often creeps into your room to watch you sleeping. You don’t know that even though people tell her she’s doing a good job, your momma doubts her mothering skills every single day.
Here’s what I hope you do know:
I hope you know that even on days like today where momma is frustrated with you and doesn’t know what to do, that she still loves you. I hope you know that just because momma sometimes gets upset, there is nothing wrong with you, because you see, even though momma knows you better than anyone else in her life, there is still so much she has to learn. I hope you know that every day of your existence on this planet you are wanted, you are important, and you are worthy. I hope you know that momma tries to make every single decision with what is best for you in mind.
I hope you know that you are momma’s truest love, even on the bad days. I hope you know that you are momma’s dream come to life, even when she’s crying. I hope you know that there are no words to describe your value in this world.
I hope you know you are loved.