Apr 23rd

You guys, I have a one year old? How did this happen so fast? It’s seems like just yesterday I was pregnant then holding my baby boy for the first time. Everyone tells you it goes by fast but I don’t think I was prepared for how quickly this past year has flown by….

I’m a mess of emotions as my baby boy turns one today; filled with  joy, love, excitement and even sadness as we have made it through the first year. I’ve tried to chronicle my journey as a new mom, but most recently really opened up about what is has been like for me. This little monkey (yep, one of many nicknames) has brought me more joy that I ever thought possible. I have the most amazing husband and wonderful life, but Carter has become the missing puzzle piece. True story? I didn’t really think I was someone who wanted to have children and it wasn’t until I was with Ryan that I changed my mind. Now I look baby and feel bad for people who don’t want kids, not that they cannot have. It’s the most beautiful blessing, scary journey and exciting ride I have ever been on.

He’s the true meaning of selfless unconditional love. He’s the reminder that little things are such a wonder. He’s the light that brightens a room. He’s my baby boy.

From the moment I first laid eyes on this beautiful little child my heart was stolen. I knew then I would do anything and everything to show my child how much I love him and what he means to me. Of course there’s been challenging moments and rough times, but the giggles and the hugs from nowhere slowly fade those memories. Today he is not so much my baby anymore but my little toddler full of life and curiosity. He has eight teeth, a full head of hair and is walking around trying to explore anything in site. His appetite is absolutely amazing and the truth is we order kid’s meals for this little Italian eater. From the beginning he’s shown the warmth of his heart with cuddles, the goofiness of his personality with his laughter and his true happiness with endless smiles. I don’t know if they make them much happier. He’s now babbling and says a few words, which before I know it will turn into sentences. I’m so looking forward to having conversations with him this next year and I might die the first time he says ‘I love you mama’.

It’s exciting to look forward to what is to come as he continues to grow up, but there is a pang of heartbreak that I don’t have my little baby anymore. Thank goodness for phones, social media and this online diary for allowing me to try to bottle it all up as much as one can. I’m ready for the next challenges motherhood will be bringing like setting limits, learning to discipline and who knows what else. It’s so scary to be a parent but luckily I have the best partner helping me figure it all out along the way. And a big thank you to the readers of this diary who are so kind with comments and messages.

So with that, I leave this one year anniversary with a letter to my little boy. You may remember this first one? Also, when you’re child has a love of food like mine does, you’re not not going to have your friend come over and take professional photos trying cake for the first time. Right? So enjoy the best pictures of my little man enjoying his first birthday cake.

Dear Carter, 

I hope you keep your infectious laugh.

I hope you continue to love me as you do.

I promise to give you endless hugs.

I hope you and your dad always have your silly relationship.

I hope you know one day how much you’ve taught me.

I hope your mischievous sense of humor continues to develop.

I promise to allow you to explore with your independent spirit.

I hope you only grow to love more foods.

I pray you learn giving is a key to happiness.

I hope you possess your father’s qualities as he’s pretty remarkable.

I hope you know I had no idea I could love you this much.

I promise to cherish in my heart forever the good and the struggles of year one.

I hope you know I wake up with a warmth in my heart everyday knowing I get to see you.

I hope you continue to love your doggies.

I hope you live each day to the fullest.

I pray you find faith in whichever way suits you.

I hope one day you know the amount of joy you bring to all those around you.

I hope you find something you would die for and live for it.

I hope you know there’s nothing I love more than your hugs.

I hope you learn the scariest things are often the most rewarding.

I hope you know if you see me crying they’re often tears of joy for how much I love you.

I hope you see your father is my best friend.

I pray you find a partner you can share your world with.

I hope you never miss the moment.

I hope you learn to find silence in your day.

I hope you never bite your nails.

I hope you walk with your head up.

I hope you learn there’s positives in being broken down.

I pray you love to read.

I hope you learn if something’s worth fighting for give it all you’ve got.

I hope you know ice cream fixes many problems.

I hope you strive to love.

I promise to be your best friend if you let me.

I hope you know miracles are out there everyday.

I hope you know the best is yet to come.

I promise to do all I can to give you a memorable childhood.

I hope one day when you have a child this will all make sense.