An open letter to my son on his 2nd birthday

me and jax holding fingers

Jax,

Two years ago about this time of night (1:22 am) I was wide awake and wondering what the next 24 hours would bring. I wondered when I would meet you since you took your time joining us. I wondered what you would look like, sound like, smell like and how big you would actually be. Two years ago I was ending one phase of my life and entering another but no imaginings on my part could have prepared me for what I am feeling now and what has happened since you came into our world; your moms’ and mine. I am writing you this because I am sure someday, years from now, you will find it since things on the internet live forever and I want you to know what I am feeling and thinking on your special day.

Just a few hours ago I was holding you and singing you to sleep, the song I always sing you, the song I have always sung you; our song. Your strong little hands were grabbing my ears, rubbing my beard and squeezing my head as your cheek was pressed up against my face. Your normally squirrely self was content to let daddy hold you even after you heard your moms’ sweet voice in the hallway. Now, alone outside while you are sleeping soundly getting ready to enjoy your second birthday I am left to think about that wonderful day two years ago.

I remember looking at you, touching your tiny hand just a minute after you were born and never feeling quite that happy ever in my life. When I first held you a few minutes later I remember looking at you and knowing that life would never be the same again while feeling quite content with that. Some new dads are afraid of that feeling, that change and challenge and what comes next; but not me. I knew and still know that whatever came next, however it has and will that we would be together and get through it together; the three of us.

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Since that first day, you’ve made me worry, laugh hysterically, be completely frustrated and cry the happiest of tears sometimes all on the same day but I would not trade a day of that for a thousand without. I remember almost every day of the last two years; things like feeding you at 3am, your first steps, your first words, when you figured out how to dance along to Sesame Street, when you started counting, all the other “firsts” and all the bits of your own personality I have seen you develop since you were born. Every day is a new adventure for us even on the boring ones. We are both learning as we go. Every day, bit by bit you are learning to be you and whatever that will become and I am so excited for you. Every day I am learning to be a better dad and a better person and that is because of you and your mom.

I cannot wait to show you the world that I have seen and the things that I haven’t yet. There are great things that we will see and do together on our adventures through life in the years to come.  I will hold your hand through some of it and stand right behind you during the rest while letting you feel your way along with your own already noticeable and ever growing courage while always being there when and if you need me.

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Thank you, Jax Michael, my son and my little bear, for showing me who I really am, what I’m capable of and keeping me focused on what I want to be even when this ocean we call life gets as foggy as a morning beach in the Pacific Northwest. Thank you for making me smile on the hardest of days and inspiring me during the most turbulent times.  I could write 100 books and a thousand different characters but none of those creations will ever make me as happy as you have made me.

Two years ago today you came into this world. Two years ago today I was reborn. The future now holds our greatness just waiting for us to grab it.

Happy birthday little boy.

Daddy loves you.

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