November 16, 2012 at 12:03 am , by Nick Shell
I know you still won’t be able to read this for a couple of more years, but I wanted to write you a Happy Birthday message on your 2nd birthday anyway.
Since your Mommy and I found out we were having you, back in April 2010, I have been writing a blog entry at least once a week, and often once a day.
The rest of the world has had access to virtually every moment of your process of growing up, but the words were mainly written for the rest of the world.
However, this is just for you. I’ve never written directly to you, until now, on your 2nd birthday.
This day is especially monumental for me. It signifies you officially leaving the days of being a baby and entering the days of being a little boy.
I noticed recently you started calling me “Daddy” now, instead of “Dada.”
Right now as I look at your picture of you holding your birthday balloons and wearing your necktie, which you very willingly wore to be like me, I am so proud of you and love you so much that… it comes out in the form of sadness, somehow.
Everybody told me not to rush any stage of your life. I tried not to.
Of course, the younger you were, the more difficult being a dad was. I was so clueless, even a year ago.
I’ll never forget when you turned 15 months old. That was the first time you really asked for me. That was the first time you wouldn’t cry if Mommy left the room.
Since then, I could tell so obviously that you wanted me and that you loved me.
So while I’ll try not to rush your life along too quickly, I have to admit, I love seeing you grow up.
The older you get and the more you come to life, the stronger of a connection I feel with you. I’m pretty sure it’s a father/son thing.
I love taking way too many pictures of you. I love writing about all the funny things you do and say.
I love you, son. So much.
Though you probably never see me cry, if you could be here right now as I write this, you would see a 31-year-old man who can barely keep himself together.
It’s funny- I didn’t cry a single tear the night you were born. You were just a strange baby who couldn’t talk. My job at that point was basically just to keep you alive.
But today, I can’t hold back the tears for anything. This is the first time I’ve simply been overwhelmed by my love for you.
What most fathers seem to experience the day their son is born, I guess I’m experiencing right now. To me, this is you being born.
That’s because you and I have gotten to the point now where I can actually see my influence over you. Like with wanting to wear the necktie, you want to be like me.
Man. That humbles me and breaks me. Thank you.
Thank you for being my son. I can’t thank God enough for you.
Today you will receive gifts from Mommy and me: some metal trains and tracks to ride them on.
I know you’ll really like them. You’ll carry around your trains with you everywhere you go. But eventually, they’ll be at the bottom of some drawer.
What I will remember most about your 2nd birthday is the way I feel about you right now. And that’s why I’m writing you this letter. I want to be able to capture what I’m feeling right now. That’s what I think is the best gift I can give you today.
Maybe it’s a dad thing, or maybe it’s just me, but in the likeness of a learning curve, I’ve had a “loving curve” with you.
Two years into this, I am experiencing love for you that I have never felt for anyone in my life. So different than the way I love your Mommy.
The love I have for you is wrapped up in some unspoken bond I can’t quite express in words right now. But I promise you I will spend the rest of my life trying to.
Happy Birthday, Son. I love you with all I have.