Four score and seven years ago—wait, no, just four years ago—we brought forth into this world a crying baby boy. And by we I mean my husband and I as well as the doctor and her medical team; my sister, who provided physical and emotional support; and God, showing up in the details small and enormous. We brought forth a baby, because he wasn't willing to make his own exit from his watery nest.
Four years feels like ten most of the time. How do I remember the baby so needy when my son stands before me independently wanting to do so much on his own?
Four years feels like a mere couple of weeks some of the time. How can I forget the worry that he wouldn't figure out how to nurse, the excitement when he first rolled over, the joy at his baby giggles?
This boy, ready to be big and ride his new bike but still wanting to be small when he crawls in my lap for a story or for comfort when he's sad.
This boy, so tall, so ready to race out of my sight as he has fun with friends but still clinging to my hand when he falls asleep, making sure I stay as long as he can get me to.
What a journey from wish to real live child! Our home before had no marbles rolling across the carpet, no Hot Wheels on the dining room table, no wooden blocks balancing in towers in the living room. Now we can't imagine a room without some sign of the child who lives here. A sticker on the wall, a stuffed animal in our bed, a drawing on the refrigerator door.
The years will continue and the signs will change, as they already have, with pacifiers and teething rings and burp rags already hidden away. But for now we celebrate today.
We celebrate in mud between toes and cake between fingers, friends flashing smiles and family sharing hugs. Balloons, new toys, and ice cream sandwiches. Batman, fierce, crouching on top of the birthday cake.
Today we celebrate the boy: four years strong, four years wise, four years ours to love.
Happy birthday, Geddy.