My Dearest Anyah,
You celebrated your second birthday today. It seems like I just met you but it also seems like I've known you forever. You are with out a doubt completely yourself, a tiny individual which I find both fascinating and vibrantly beautiful.
Today you spent part of your birthday celebration jumping and laughing with the other kids but when you needed a break you found yourself a quiet spot under the snack table to sit with your bottle on the cool tile and rest. And that is so totally you. Some kids are leaders, some kids are followers, and you my darling are absolutely just content to be on your own schedule and your own pace.
It must be nice being you. You have no desire to be the center of attention all the time. When you want some attention you find a way to get it (usually by drawing on my walls or coming for cuddles, depending on your mood). You prefer to give attention than to get it. You love to lay on kisses, give hugs, make people laugh, play pretend with your baby dolls so you can be the mommy, and let your sister chase you longest when you play tag. To be able to see the joy in giving is an invaluable gift. It is one of the greatest things I have seen in you so far and you've taught me so much about it that I find myself searching for ways to give more of myself to be like you. Kids teach parents to you know.
You and your sister have a typical sibling relationship. You are each others best friend, and worst enemy. This year you both came to each others rescue more than once proving for a fact that in an emergency you've got each others back. You so love your sister and want to be just like her when she does big girl things. And yet, you are so different than your sister and you drive her crazy with your need for quietness, your love of hanging out in cool dark rooms, and your fascination with watching the same Mickey Mouse Clubhouse and My Lil' Pony episodes 100 times in a row. She taught you to climb the ladder and go down the slide and you are teaching her (slowly) to take turns and share. You are such a good sharer (most of the time) and that makes me happy.
You are a Mommy's girl. You were my first child to tell me you missed me. You sometimes cry when I have to leave or take a nap since I work nights right now. You are sensitive and very aware of how you and others feel. That is a beautiful gift as well.
You love loud music, dancing, Disneyland, popcorn, apples, cold milk & cookies (who doesn't), bubble baths, naps, Mickey Mouse, our dog Pixie, Papa Glen and Nannie, Daddy's games, Sister's attention, bubbles, drawing on my walls, digging in the dirt, play dough messes, helping me cook, and pulling every single flower off every single plant you find.
You dislike hotdogs, the rash you get from peanuts, hot concrete (since you always take off your shoes), when people won't push you anymore on the swing, kissing people with facial hair (except Daddy and "Gigi" (Uncle George)), drinking without a straw, and having messy hands.
There are so many adventures left in your life, in our lives… and I am glad to have you here with us because you make things so much more interesting. The way you get spunky when you want your way and the way you tell everyone to "don't worry, it be ok" make my whole soul light up. I love it when you sing songs and make up new verses and when you play pretend tea party and act like my cake tastes horrible so you have to spit it out. You are going to be a handful… in all the best ways. Daddy, sister, and I are blessed…truly blessed… to know you.