I write letters to my children on their birthdays. Here is last year's letter to Alex.
Happy birthday, sweet girl! You're a whole two years old today.
I know that each year in your life will come with its own changes, but this past year felt especially accelerated.
Your expressiveness, language, and personality have emerged in all sorts of ways. You really show us how you feel, whether angry when we can't understand what you're saying, or overjoyed when Daddy gets home.
You've picked up so many words, though still spoken in sometimes indecipherable baby language.
Gak = milk
Ca-ca = coffee (or the Starbucks logo)
Ayax = Alex
Dee-dee = thank you
Ooh-ooh-aah-aahs - monkey (or her pacifier)
Jimmy Fa-fa - Jimmy Fallon
You're charming, social, quick to try new things, resilient, and pretty fearless for a toddler. You love to flash your smile at people, give them an exuberant, "Hi!," and wait for them to respond. You can pretty much climb anything at the playground with confidence. And if you get hurt, your emotional recovery is quick.
You love bath time, playing with Play-Doh, eating (nearly all the time), doing whatever Aaron is doing, getting tickled by Daddy, piggy-back rides, reading books together, giving hugs, playing at the park, and attempting to do things by yourself.
Like a typical two-year-old, you have a strong will and lots of emotion. Sometimes that gets frustrating for you - to want something but not be able to adequately do it or express it. But we'll make it through this.
I love your fireball spirit. I love that you're feisty and tough and joyful. And I hope that we can be a family that is a safe place for you to be yourself.
I love you, daughter.