Oh, my girl! I'm not sure what to say. It seems like no time at all I was sending your dad off to work insisting I wasn't getting to meet you that day and then, mere hours later, calling him to come back. And we did meet you that day - oh, wonderfully, fantastically. Perfectly.
But it seems a lifetime, too. You've grown so much. I still call you my baby - but you aren't, not anymore. You're your own person now - with opinions and preferences. More wonderfully, with stories and jokes and hilarious ways of seeing things. I am amazed every single day at who you're becoming. One of my greatest blessings in life has been and will be being able to witness you figuring out who you are and finding your place in this world. You're already doing it, and if there's anything I know for sure - you're going to make this world a better place. You've already made me a better person in countless ways.
Even our neighborhood is brighter with you in it. You have so many people here that love you. We can't walk 20 feet without being stopped so you can give high-fives or be coo'ed over. Every one exclaims how quickly you're growing - and though I always think they don't know the half of it - they do, they really do. From Jose (our old maintenance man), the the crosswalk lady, to the crazy leglass guy to the brothers at the bodega - they all love you in their own way, they've invested themselves into your smile, your new words, into you. I feel very lucky you have such a wonderful community of people around that cares about you so very much.
I have a feeling it's going to be like that no matter where you go in life. You seem to bring out a light in people, Maire, a happiness. Even when you were just days old that was true, and it seems to only be growing over time.
I guess every mom thinks their daughter or son is the greatest ever. But, darling, you should know I don't think you could be anymore magical or amazing than you are.
You're very excited for this birthday, and that makes me excited too. I had all kins of plans to make it special, and while I've gotten some of them done, the ones I really wanted slipped through the cracks. I feel awful, and while I know you probably won't notice and your daddy will make you feel like the whole world is yours - I wish I could've done more. Mostly so you woudl know how very very very much I love you. How this day celebrates everything I love most in this world. You are my shining light, little one, and every dream I had dared not begun to hope for. You've made a love and life I thought was perfect with your daddy even better - and you made into a family. A family. We're a team, the three of us and I can't wait to see what life brings us. Thanks for choosing us. Thanks for letting me be your mama.
I love you, Bugaboo.