Monday, July 11, 2011

Samuel: 28 Months

Dear Little Boxer,

Approximately four days ago, on what would be your 28th month of life on this earth, your face was swollen, bumped and dirty. We were camping at a lake in Oregon and the mosquitos had made the most of their time in your sweet vicinity, attacking the tender flesh of your face and leaving behind raised, swollen welts that threatened to close your eyes completely. Yet you endured it all in your usual happy, laid-back stride in life, content to cover yourself with dirt, smile at me through half-closed eyes, and bob and weave around the campground like the little boxer you resembled.

And so it is with all the adventures you are on these days. You dance gracefully through life's ups and downs, smiling and scheming, laughing and galloping, throwing and hitting and hugging away. You are pure joy, all boy, and the sweetest of children. And I think that Kelly might have a crush on you.

You can be naughty, oh so naughty, but you know how to get on my good side. When you do disobey, you are repentant, drooping your head and lip, muttering "owwy," and making your way to time out. When I catch you in the middle of something, you will look at me with wily eyes and the biggest of grins, hoping against hope that your sweet impish face will woo me to forget the sins of your past and relish in the cuteness of the present.

You hardly stop moving from the moment you awake until you finally surrender to sleep at night. You are so, so busy, whether climbing, driving tractors, running, hitting, swinging, throwing, singing, dancing, twirling or wrestling. You love sticks and bugs, water and balls. Even at night you are in constant motion, dreaming wildly, thrashing about, reaching for your bedfellows (aka Mama or Maddie) and grinding your teeth. At mealtimes we practically have to force you to stop moving long enough to refuel. You are a whirling dervish.

One night as we camped in Oregon, I drew you into my sleeping bag partway through the night, as the temperature dropped and you became increasingly restless. For the remainder of the evening, your face had to be nestled against mine, cheek to cheek, and your arms were ever wrapped around my neck, cozy and tight. Though I hardly slept, I couldn't help but fall in love all over with my snuggly, restless boy. You reached for me, kissed me repeatedly, called to me, and rested against my body as though you were a tiny newborn. I enjoyed each moment, knowing that before long, not only will you outgrow my sleeping bag, but my arms.

Your heart bursts with love for the people in your life. You are full of smiles, hugs and kisses for those you love. Maddie shared a twin bed with you for our entire stay in Oregon, where each and every night you threw your arms around her shoulders in great joy to be going to sleep once again with your best friend. Throughout our stay, you would crawl up in the laps of Grammy or Papa, Joe or Daddy, and snuggle away, staying much longer than any of us hoped. You are just such a cuddly and affectionate boy.

And the tractors. Oh, the tractors. I think there will need to be a separate post all about our short visit to Papa at work. If you were in school right now, and could have a family member for career day, it would most certainly be Papa. He has the absolute dream job in your eyes, which were wide with equal parts bewilderment and concentration as you decided which machine to visit next. You sat behind the controls, lifting large claws, moving enormous tracks, spinning in the cabs and beeping the horns. If only we could place a large, functional CAT in our backyard, well, I think you would never leave home.

You bring such joy and life to our home. You are fun and silly, smart and adventurous. You remind us each and every day the joys of being a child in the big, wide world. God has gifted you with a tender heart, a mind that seeks to figure things out, and the most joyful, light spirit imaginable. We can't possibly think of a more perfect fit for our family.

Love you buddy,


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