Dear Ryan and Quinn,
Last night your Daddy and I put down our little two year olds and in just a couple of hours I will wake up big, sleepy three year olds.
How is that possible? It's so cliche, but darn it, this has been a fast year.
Ryan and Quinn, you are joy personified.
In three short years, you have brought more light into our lives than we could have ever imagined or dreamed of. I never knew how much I could love until we had you. Your very existence makes every.single.day worthwhile and full.
Two years to three has been a year of discovery, challenges, excitement, and all sorts of "firsts".
Your first swimming lessons.
Your first full year at two day a week preschool.
Your first year of "talking" and expressing.
Your first year of making friends.
Your first move to a new house.
Your first big boy/girl beds.
Your first nights without a pacifier (Quinn).
Your first understanding of holidays --- Christmas, Easter, and your birthdays (yup, it's a holiday!)
Your first voiced prayers.
And so many more...
The passion that you start each day with is inspiring. Oh, what I would give to have that energy and vivaciousness of your age again! Every day is a new adventure --- even if it's just to HEB to pick up "ninas" (bananas) or shoe shopping with Mommy.
As I was reflecting last night on your lives, I realized that your daddy and I never really call you "the twins". I know that's how the world sees you. And there's nothing wrong with that at all. In fact, it's amazingly special. And the bond you share is indescribable. You truly care for each other. Always checking in with each other, attempting to get the other in trouble :), comforting one another when you are hurting, and loving the other to the moon and back. You have this built-in playmate that quite honestly, you take full advantage of, so now our roles are regulated to that of supervisors most of the time. My heart melts when I see the two of you head to head and toe to toe laying on the floor watching the latest Mickey Mouse episode. And the conversations you have? Hilarious. The fights you have? Not so hilarious but part of the deal.
But I think the reason that I don't think of you as "twins" so much (except remembering that you were born about 30 seconds apart), is you both are so very different. Almost every part of you is a yin/yang of the other. You are a perfect compatible match of opposites. And I love that. It keeps us on our toes, that's for sure. You are individuals and we celebrate that.
And let's not kid each other either. This past year, there have been some rough days. Some days that I would stare hard at the clock and will the hands to move in super sonic speed to nap time. Hey, guys? I think this is normal. And I think some days you probably wished it more than me. Toddlerhood is not for the faint of heart, that's for sure. Were there days that we all fought? Yes. Were there days that Mommy yelled more than she should have? Absolutely. Were there days when we threw things? Oh, yes. Well, technically Mommy never threw anything out of anger, but wanna know a secret? Sometimes I really, really wanted to.
There were days that I wanted nothing more to escape, to breathe, to listen to whatever music I wanted in the car, and just be. The ironic part? No sooner than I would make my escapes - whether to the grocery store or a night with girlfriends, I found myself missing you guys with all my heart. Wondering if you were happy. If you had a good bath. If you were laughing and smiling. And most likely you were. Because your daddy is pretty much the best at all those things. But I always would miss hearing you cracking each other up, overhearing your stories of the day, and playing silly games.
But you know what? Most days were great. Mommy is learning not to let a whole day be defined by super perfect slices of time. Instead, I am learning to seize a few great moments and call it a success. And by that measure, we've done well. You and I. We've laughed and learned, hugged and kissed, held hands and cuddled, discovered and played. Last night your Daddy and I were sitting outside while you guys ran your nightly obligatory "circles" on the driveway. I don't even recall now what was so precious, but we looked at each other and squeezed each other's hands as if to say "Wow. This is really our life. Our miracles, running full speed without a care in the world and laughing the whole time." It's more than we could have ever hoped when we set out to have you.
People say two is hard. I say two was pretty darned cool. And I think three will be as well. We are in for a ride this next year, Ryan and Quinn. I'm sure it won't always be easy.
There will be tough moments. New challenges. New obstacles. New blessings.
But there are a few things I guarantee:
We will get through them together. The four of us with God leading the way.
Our love for you will grow even more. My heart has already tripled since you made your way into this world. And every day it just blossoms even more.
We will have so much fun LIVING each day. Taking it as it comes. And just a whole lotta smiling.
My prayer for you this year is simple. Just enjoy. Live life with the same zeal and zest that you did at one and two. Three may sound pretty grown up to some because you aren't technically "babies" anymore. But guess what? You kinda are. My babies that is. Every day I wrestle with wanting to freeze time so you don't grow and letting you expand your wings to take flight. Just don't fly too far away from me yet, ok?
I want this year to be full of fun, laughter, learning, and growing for you. I think sometimes we as parents feel the need to rush you through milestones so you can get to another, and another and another. And a vicious cycle ensues where we never celebrate where we are in that moment. Let's celebrate together, okay? And let's not rush it. Trust your momma: there will be plenty of time to rush around and "be grown up" in your future.
Three is not the year for it. You just BE. Be yourself. Love yourself. Love each other. Love your Mommy and your Daddy. And love your God, with all your heart, mind, and soul. Because without Him, this THREE year journey would have been impossible.
Happy Third Birthday, my special little ones. I love you more than you could possibly fathom.