My dear, sweet baby boy. The years went by a lot faster then I had ever anticipated and somehow, today you are TWO.
I couldn't have asked for a sweeter little boy to introduce me to my new role of mama. You don't know this, but I was never a kid person until I had you. Small children TERRIFIED me, let alone babies. I know everyone was a little worried about how we'd adjust to parenthood - clueless, alone and in a foreign country - but you couldn't have been an easier baby, and for that I am forever thankful.
The newborn haze that most people talk about was a breeze for us; you made the transition to parenthood a truly delightful one. Things have gotten more difficult as you've gotten older and we've faced different challenges, but in those tough toddler moments, I always go back to our early days getting to know each other and say a little thanks to God for making what is usually the toughest days our easiest ones.
I love how you just light up a room when you enter. Everyone always comments on your smile, often a permanent fixture on your face and how it just lights up your entire face. You get that from your Dadda. He's known for his cheery nature and big, big smile. I hope your never lose that smile. The world can be a hard place at times but I hope we can bring you up to see the good in things.
I love hearing your little voice. Sometimes, I get a little scared when I hear a hint of an American accent in there, but no matter what, I will always love hearing you talk. I love it when you hash out your day, telling us in great toddler detail about what you did and what friends you saw. I love it when you wake up from nap and call out come in, mama. come in. I love it when we tuck you into bed at night and you give me a kiss on the cheek and say 'nanu', your own unique version of I love you. We know what it means and it warms my heart to hear it.
I love your caring nature. I love it how you make sure all your toys are hugged at bedtime and how if you see me having a moment, you'll bring me a tissue and give me a little pat. I love seeing you hug your little friends and just enjoying life. It makes me happy to see you happy, sweet boy.
I love your curiosity. I can tell that you are going to be like your Dad, never satisfied with a simple explanation but needing to know exactly how things work. Perhaps one day you'll be an engineer also. Perhaps not. No matter what you decide to do, we'll always support you.
I love how easily you adapt to things. We've certainly moved you around - you had literally flown around the world by 11 months old. You've already lived in two different countries, and traveled to even more. You've just taken everything in your stride and made what could be really difficult periods much easier then expected. Thank you, sweet boy. You really are our little globetrotter.
Some women feel they lose their identity when they become a mother, but I feel like after almost 30 years, I found it. Being your Mum is the most important job I will ever have and one that won't end at 18. At 8.25pm on the 16th of August 2011, when you were finally placed in my arms after a 68 hour labour, I held you and knew I'd be your mama forever. That no-one, or nothing could ever diminish my love for you and that no matter how much I thought I loved you, it'd only keep growing.
You were worth every second of the mammoth effort it took to bring you into this world. You are worth every frustrated moment, when I feel like tearing my hair out because I can't understand what you want or you literally tear my hair out because you just want to let me know you've hit the terrible twos. You're worth it. You are truly the greatest gift we have ever received, and one I will never take for granted. I love you, my little Dutch boy.