I am quite late in getting this written for you, son, and I am sorry for that. We have been crazy busy. But better late than never.
Where has our time gone? In two months time you will no longer be my baby, but my toddler. I have told you so many times about the day you were born and I still remember it crystal clear. Just the other day, as I stroked your little cheek with my finger, I was reminded of our first night together; how soundly you slept, but how fitfully I did. I woke up every 10 minutes with my hand in your bassinet because I was no long stroking your sweet, chubby cheek. Making sure you were still there, that you were real, and that it had not, in fact, all been a dream.
You are an amazing little boy and an early walker. Everywhere we go, people stop and stare and talk to us because of how adorable you are and “oh my goodness! He’s ten months and walking?!” You are going to accomplish great things in life. You are already RUNNING! I wasn’t expecting that to happen the very second you started walking but it did. I love watching your face when you walk a great distance on your own. You keep your arms outstretched in front of you and you giggle endlessly as you walk.
Today as we got you ready for school, I helped you wash your hands and when I took you to the towel to dry your hands I said the same thing I always do, “time to pat, pat, pat. Pat your hands dry. Pat, pat, pat.” I swear, today, you said “pat, pat.”
I plan to give you all your letters when you are old enough to appreciate them. Each letter I write, I try to imagine what you’ll look like, what sort of man you’ll be, and how tall you’ll be by the time these reach you. You’re already so tall. You can reach stuff from the dining room table now and I have no idea when that happened! Your father is just over 6 feet tall himself so I imagine you’ll be just as tall. Now though, you still have to look up to everyone but before you know it, you’ll have to look down to everyone. (You’ll find that everyone on your grandmother’s side of the family is very short.)
I love every second of watching you grow. I love every smile that lights up your face. I want you to know that even if I miss a few things, it is not at all because I don’t want to be there. I miss them because I am doing everything I can to be both parents and still give you the best you deserve.
This letter is written 5 days late of your 10 month birthday because I have been trying to pick up a second job, which I have. 5 days ago I had an interview and less than an hour after leaving it they called me and offered me the position. This is an incredible opportunity for our little family. I have never made this much money before and I can’t wait to start it. But I will officially be working two jobs while finishing my associates degree so we’ll have some tiring days ahead of us.
As much as I love your grandparents, though, I tired of living with them. We need own own space and you need your own room and closet. Mommy REALLY wants her own closet space again, plus I need more places to hide your birthday and Christmas gifts. This job will not only help us get our own house but it will, hopefully, help me pay for your third birthday. I have already started saving for a trip to Disney World and my goal is that we can stay at one of their resort hotels for a weekend. I know that at this point you’re too young to care or even know what Disney World is but I really want to go back too. Plus I think you’ll really love it, especially with some secrets of Disney I have been looking up. Like one, if we see any of the toys from Toy Story I’m going to tell you to shout, “ANDY’S COMING!” and they are suppose to do something pretty cool. We’ll spend the whole weekend in Magic Kingdom so you can see every part of the park.
I have so much fun planned for you. I think my favorite is going to be your summer vacations. I used to work at a day care so I know some pretty cool stuff and places. Your older self may now be rolling your eyes and/or reminiscing on those old memories, but whatever you’re doing, I want you to know that I want you to have the coolest childhood.
My favorite thing about your growing up is that you’re learning independence. You now play in your room while I cook dinner, which you loved the chicken hot pockets I made! But managed to find sand and pour it all over the kitchen floor. How did you do that?? You hadn’t even been outside yet and somehow there was enough sand on the floor to make it a beach. You’ve never even been to the beach yet! I couldn’t help but laugh and you had your “I did good?” look on your face. Just know, you’ll only get away with that once! ONCE! FYI no matter how upset I may seem, chances are I’m laughing on the inside again.
I have to close this letter much like I’ve closed many others to you by telling you about your father. Again, by the time you read this, I don’t know what will have happened, if you’ll have met him, if you’ll even have a chance to know him, if you’ll care at all about hearing of him but you have the birth right to know.
As it stands now as you are 10 months and 5 days old, he hasn’t seen you since you were 3 weeks old, not in person anyways. Part of that could be put on me because when you were 4 weeks old he did ask to see you. But you have to understand that we had an agreement, 24 hours notice at minimum for visitation. It’s only polite. It is polite to give anyone you want to visit AT LEAST 24 hours notice to give them time to plan, tidy their house, and so on. The only reason he did not see you that week was because he was giving me only 4 hours notice. It was against what we BOTH agreed upon the week before you were born. I am sorry for that and if that upsets you, please come to me. He did ask one other time after that to come see you, I want to say you were about 3 or 4 months old and I told him he would have to start helping me provide for you by either sending you clothes, bottles, diapers, wipes, and/or money for your savings. You see, I was afraid that having a person come in and out of your life randomly would do more harm than good, I still feel that way. That is why I do not date, I am not going to bring someone in your life that isn’t going to stay. I believe (and I have told him this) a child is a responsibility and a priority, not a convenience. I gave him those requirements, also, to know his level of commitment to be a part of your life. It hurts me too say this, but, he never responded back after that. I did not hear from him again until this last month when he asked how you were doing. You know that I am not one of those parents that will use a child as a weapon against the other parent or try to fill your head with lies about them. I simply want you to know the truth. I will never lie to you when it comes to something like this. (I may about Santa or the tooth fairy and such unless you still believe then yes they are very real and I have been dubbed their honorary helper! If you still believe, clap!) I will say that he may be changing. I said, MAY BE. Please don’t give your hope up too high. When we last spoke he said he would turn himself into child support, once he is legally made to pay they will also grant him visitation. We will see though.
I am really sorry for whatever way he makes you feel. I know it isn’t fair and it sucks. I’m trying everything I can to be enough for you but I know it isn’t the same not having a dad. I love you so much! I tried to give him every opportunity to be apart of your life from day one but there is just something in his life right now keeping him from being able to make that commitment. And I am sorry. The only thing I am not sorry for is that he gave me you. That is the only good he has done for me. HE GAVE ME YOU!
My life was in a very dark place before I had you and I was so scared when I discovered I was pregnant. But as scary as it was, I wouldn’t change it for anything. I’d die for you. You saved my life the second you came into being. God does everything for a reason. I may not have been prepared for you but he knew I needed you and you have turned out to be the most amazing person I have every seen in my life. You have lit a fire in me and I thought I was determined before I had you…boy, was I wrong. That determination has become something more fierce and more unwavering than I’ve ever known. You have helped me accomplish more than I ever knew was possible.
You are my strength and my light. I was always be there to lift you up and pick you up. As I always tell you everyday, I’m right here. I’m not going anywhere. I’ll never leave you! I love you so much!