Sunday, September 29, 2013

Matthew is EIGHT!

Darling Matthew,

Happy Birthday, my sweet heart! Today you turned eight and in your honour, I wanted to share with you eight of the many, many, MANY reasons why I love you.

1. Your Heart

Matthew, you are a wise and sensitive boy, with an empathetic heart. I love how you always seem to know when someone - adult or child, stranger or friend -needs a little extra compassion and you find quiet ways to give some. Even as a baby, your heart knew.

Matthew, age 1

You are attuned not just to me and your brother, but to the world at large.

You may find that the world is not always a kind place for a heart like yours, my darling. But I hope and pray that you don't let the world's dark snuff out your heart's light.

Instead, I hope that you can find a way to let your light be the world's hope.

2. Your Light

My boy, since the moment you were born, you have been surrounded by an incredible light. That's your spirit and it is wild and bright and SO full. I love the energy you bring to my world, even when you've managed to talk more than me (which is no small feat) and you really should be sleeping.

Matthew, hurling himself with glee...

I love the way you hurl yourself into new ideas and schemes and play with absolute faith  that everything will be OK.
The world might not always be yours for the having, my pet, but never stop believing that it might.

3. Your smile

Your toothy grin lights up your face, a room, my heart. It is often the first thing I see upon awakening, the thing I look forward to seeing every day as I wait at the school gate, watching for you to burst out the door and tumble, laughing, into sunshine.

My boy and his glorious, gap-toothed grin!

It is sunshine and hope, right there in the middle of your face. I will always, always help you find it if it's lost and believe that it will continue to draw the good your way.

4. Your drive

I have never met another kid so willing to throw himself into learning something entirely new. Over the past eight years, I have watched you - awed - walk, run, climb, skate, leap, bound and soar.

Dreaming big dreams, this boy...

It is an absolute privilege to bear witness to your enthusiasm and your dogged attempts to master a new skill. Tenacious, you are. Determined, you are. Amazing, you are.

Never lose it. Any of it.

5. Your quiet

Admittedly, you are not often quiet, Matthew. Mostly, you chatter and yell your way through your days, not unlike your mama. But, there are moments - when you're contentedly still with a book, a game, your thoughts, when I can see contentment on you.

Some of the best moments of the day happen in the early hours, when the house is still and we are too: you sneak into my bed and wrap yourself around me, place a hand on my cheek, the way you've done since you were a wee, wee leprechaun - these quiet, heartbreakingly tender moments with you let me know that all is right with the world. Simply because you are in it.

6. Your loud

Child, you are loud. SO STINKING LOUD!!! You sing loudly, play with high-pitched shrieks of laughter and indignation, especially if Luke's involved and no one could ever, EVER accuse you of being shy.

Future rock stars, right here...

I can only pray that while life teaches you to temper the loud, that you always be willing and able to shout your truths and your dreams and your hopes from the highest places - proud, confident, free.

7. Your eyes

You've inherited your gorgeous, heavily-lashed eyes from your Daddy, Matthew. Like him, you see the world with clarity and a not altogether unhealthy bit of cynicism. This is a good thing, son, to let your eyes see truths that can help you along the way.

But your eyes are often filled with mirth and wonder and stories...oh, the stories they tell, even before you've said a single word. I love that your carry your heart there, Matthew.

8. Your faith

Thank you for your faith, darling Matthew. Your faith in me, in all of us who love you, in tomorrow. I have never known a child so quick to forgive, to offer comfort and to seek the good, as you. Your - often unspoken - belief that the world is a good place will bring you enormous solace as you grow, even when - especially when - it is tested.

A very serious Matthew at his First Communion

You believe in a kind and benevolent Father, the spirit of the Golden Rule and that there's nothing that a little bit of kindness can't heal. I could not be prouder of you if I tried, Matthew. Nor could I be more grateful for all that you bring to my life, the lives of those who share yours.

Thank you, as always, for choosing me.

I love you.



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