We celebrated your dad’s birthday yesterday. It was so perfect that it almost felt like it was my birthday, too. I love him more than I know how to put into words, and it melts my heart, how much you adore him, too. When he enters the room, you run to him and hug his knees. You do that more often with him than you do with me. I’d be jealous, but I’m just so proud that my husband is such an amazing father that our one year old son runs to hug him that I can’t really mind.
He hurt himself during his 31-kilometer “birthday run”, his longest run to date, so I had to patch him up when he got home. (Nothing serious, don’t worry.) You tried to remove the bandages, so we explained that daddy’s hurt and no, you can’t do that. We each signed “hurt” by putting our index fingers together, and said “Ow” with a sad face. You walked away and carried on playing. Later, you walked up to your dad and sat beside his knee, put your index fingers together and said “Ow” with a sad face, too. Then you kissed him on the cheek. Oh, my heart.
We’ve been teaching you how to sign, and it’s amazing how you’re just picking it up. You sign the following words now: milk, eat, drink (water), finished / no more, hurt, brush teeth, diaper, and wash hands. This makes communicating significantly easier for us now, much to your delight.
What else is new? Well, we got you new shoes, and you proudly pointed to them and said “wow” when your tita and grandparents were around. You like balloons and our neighbors’ Christmas lights. You engage in pretend play. You’ve actually been doing this for months now, but I’m not sure if I’ve written it down anywhere so I’m writing it down now. I’ve been making you felt toys with my own hands. I made you a mobile and hung it over your playmat. You pointed to it with a huge smile on your face and said “Wowwow.” Mommy got a double wow. I felt like a preschooler who got an entire sticker sheet of gold stars. You said the same thing when we showed you our little Christmas tree all lit up.
We considered buying a bigger Christmas tree for our new place, but we love our little tree. We bought it at a bookstore along Katipunan 8 years ago, when we lived in a tiny flat there. It was our first Christmas since we moved in together, and we weren’t going to put up a tree then, but it was on sale. It’s 4 feet tall and all we could afford at the time, but it made us so happy. It looks especially tiny here, but it feels right keeping it. Your father and I have a Christmas Eve tradition of watching A Charlie Brown Christmas. We’re all about the little trees.
You’re 13 months old today. Sometimes when I look at you, I see the young man you’re going to be. He looks a lot like your father. They say not to marry a man unless you’d be proud to have a son exactly like him. I hope we raise and nurture you well enough that you become your own person, but if you turned out exactly like your father, I wouldn’t mind in the least. I would be damn proud.