This one stings. Today is John's fourth birthday. Or, Burr-day, as he pronounces it. Gone are the days of binkies and crawling and monitoring every step for a precarious toddle down the stairs. While my heart still lurches a bit looking at photos of my Sweet Baby John, as someone who is not a fan of the constant anxiety of the baby phase, I feel like we can finally take a breath.
When John was born and Annie was 2.5, I remember saying to Rick, "we just have to make it until he's two." For reference, when Annie was two she was a big talker, almost potty trained, and a pretty chill kid. This was perhaps my first lesson in the differences in gender and possibly birth order.
John hardly talked until he was 2.5 (I blame his love for his binkie), he didn't potty train until he was 3.5, he is fearless and has my coordination, which is a VERY dangerous combo. So needless to say, the cruise control I imagined hitting when John turned two never happened. But, I feel like we are there now.
John loves all things boy. He loves super heroes, space ships, Star Wars, Paw Patrol, Ninja Turtles, Transformers, Power Rangers, you get the picture. Anything that fights, shoots, bangs or speeds is his jam. While it makes shopping for gifts for him easy, it does make keeping a tidy house an issue, but as a wise person once told me, "you can have kids or you can have a clean house-not both."
John is hilarious and smart and has a memory like a trap and he's already learning letters. He can write his name and surprised us the other day when he wrote Annie's name on a box. He seems to prefer his left hand for writing, but can switch back and forth, which is pretty cool.
He is a picky eater, but is getting better. His favorite things are fish sticks, bananas, milk, and smoothies. He's not a fan of ice cream (despite what he might tell you, because he *really* wants to like ice cream) and is just coming around to pizza. He will eat peas, but that's about it. He gags when he talks about carrots, though he's never tried one to my knowledge.
He knows how to play us like a fiddle. And when I say "us", I mean anyone that comes into contact with him. His pre-school teacher told me the other day that she's working on getting him to use his words and not cry to get his way because, "that lip comes out and he gives me the eyes and I will do whatever he wants." You and everyone else, Ms. Juanita.
And who can blame us, could you say no to this face?
Annie can't, I can tell you that much. She's the most smitten of all of us, though I believe she's starting to grow weary. The other day, after handing over something to John after he gave her the lip and the eyes, she said, "you know John, we shouldn't give you everything you want when you act like that." True, true, baby girl. We will work on it.
Happiest of birthdays to my sweet little man. Twenty years from now I want to remember how you still hold my hand when we walk together, how you say "sanks" instead of "thanks", how when you are having a great time you say, "I love this day", how much you love your 'homie', Rick, how you want to sleep in your sister's room because you don't like being alone when you wake up, your love of all things muffin/cinnamon roll, how you love to dance but don't want to take a class because "I already know how to dance, Mom!", and how you have stolen the hearts of so many. While you are now a big boy, you will always be my Sweet Baby John. We are so lucky to have you complete our family.
We love you more than we could ever say,