My baby girl, my second baby girl, is three years old. You are a walking contradiction, in the most amazingly beautiful way. Never have I seen a person, certainly not a child of two or three, act the way you do. I marvel at your selflessness. I have seen you literally give others the shirt off your back, hand your sister your favorite toy, be satisfied with one item while everyone else around you has dozens.
Any time I offer you a special treat, you demand one for you sister as well, and never even consider keeping both for yourself. Your instinct to think about others, well that's typically something more forced, learned as adults, not ingrained at birth. You are so special. You don't even have to think, it's automatic. You have no ulterior motives nor expectations of reciprocation. Pure, untaught, unaltered, kindness.
You are still my baby in so many ways. You will lay confidently in your bed in your room, fall into a deep sleep there, but without fail, I will feel the warmth of your body, and likely the heel of your foot in my face, by the break of dawn. I love how you demand the love you deserve. You tell us how to hold you, tightly, against our chests with both arms wrapped around you. And no one will get back to sleep until it's done right. My hope for you is that you never lose that. I hope you will always demand love as fiercely as you give it. And I will always come snuggle you whenever you ask, and many times between.
Your generosity and empathy knows few limits, but what I am so proud of is how you have set those limits. No one takes advantage of your kindness. For as easily as you give to others, if anyone tries to take from you, they will feel your wrath quickly and heavily. You are so strong willed. I admire so much about you. I hope no one ever breaks you down, no one ever takes this incredible power from you. You have a sense of self worth that most women don't, and even if they once did possess it, it is long gone by adulthood. That is a difficult bridge to rebuild. I promise to do everything I can to preserve this in you. You deserve to always feel strong, powerful, and self actualized the way you are now.
I love how you love. You love so hard, so deeply. When I give you a hug, you return it with all of yourself. Your sweet little arms wrapped tightly around my neck, your head pushed against mine. I love how you hold my face when you tell me you love me more, draw my world into your endless blue eyes. I love the perfect curve of your nose and how it turns up when you laugh, how your eyes sparkle even behind your squint, and how you giggle through your slightly parted tiny teeth. Your special double tooth adding just a touch of the sweetest goofiness to your smile. Your smooth cheeks have just the perfect amount of plumpness and just begged to be kissed over and over.
Your words. You stutter quite a bit right now, but I believe that's only because you are so damn determined to say the words correctly, and you are choosing words few other three year olds would know. Your slight lisp and mispronunciation of these words is so endearing to us, I find myself wishing I could record everything you say so I'll never have to live without the sound of your words at this age. I don't want to forget them. The way you say "weallwy", and then remind us you just said "weallwy" so we are further assured of your cuteness.
You are undeniably beautiful. We still get stopped by strangers on a weekly basis, people who remind us over and over how stunning you are. You've always been beautiful, certainly, but add in your huge personality and it's almost overwhelming to pack all of that into your tiny little body. We can rarely keep your wispy hair out of your face, often having to talk to you through a veil of hair. I see your eyes glow beneath it when you give us that guilty sideways stare, when you know you're doing something we wouldn't approve of.
You talk openly and freely now, the type of child that will say hi to random people, and give way too much information. You love to tell people about your puppy, and the fate of our deceased rodent pets. You love to talk to people, but to try to get you to speak when you don't want to? Well that's a feat that's nearly impossible. No one makes you do anything you don't want to do. No amount of bribery or coaxing works with you. As frustrating as that can be for your parents at times, it makes me so proud and confident for you.
Your birthday is "tismorrow" and I can't believe you're three years old, but I also can't believe you weren't always a part of our lives. I guess being a parent involves a lot of unbelievable things. But I believe in this: you girls are the best, most amazing thing to ever happen in my life. It is an honor to be your mother. I get to have you, live with you, raise you, teach you, love you.
Happy birthday to my amazing baby girl. And thank you for every wonderful second of these past three years.