Dear Merritt,

For months, you've been telling anyone who will listen that your birthday is "Octover firteen." And now it is truly almost over. And you are three.

You have an affinity for frozen bread products. A fondness for naming everything "Merritt Scot." And a penchant for detecting baked goods: "My nose smells cupcakes." Brownies. But, yes, you may have one.

PBS may be picking up a new show that you and Mommy created. It's "Ask This Old House" meets "NOVA" meets a three-year-old's perpetual "Why?" A typical episode includes you asking why bridges are bumpy. Or what a wire is. Or how toilets flush. Mommy and/or I give you a full-on scientific explanation, and you respond with "Oh, that's how it works." The show's title.

The other day I watched you pile Wheat Chex into a miniature dump truck and then back it up to your mouth and dump load after load as you chewed with a level of reverie only achievable by you. It fits right in with the fervor with which you squeal "woo-hoo!" and the way you shout "hee-haw, cowboy!" while rocking on your beloved moose. You have definitely figured out how to carpe a freakin' diem.

To indulge that point, you often ask more than thrice a day, "What we did today? Tell me!" Because you thrive just as much from hearing what you did, as you did doing it.

You timestamp everything, mostly terribly inaccurately. "Last year ago, when I was a tiny baby, I rode my bike without training wheels." "Last night, when I was born, I'm going to kindergarten." These are the regular sorts of things that come out of your mouth. It's like we're living with a time traveler.

Other sorts of things that come out of your mouth:

"You need to go to sleep. And not talk rudely." - to Mommy, when you joined us in our bed BEFORE DAWN and insisted on voicing your every thought and Mommy laid down the law about being silent or going back to your own bed.

"POS Truck!" - every time you see a UPS truck pass and your brain betrays you.

"I'm struggling." - to us at dinner one night. We're still unclear about what you were struggling with, but it was precious to hear you grunt that line.

"All the tree parts are falling!" - your succinct explanation of autumn.

"Water, kefir, milkmilkmilk." - you singing a beverage-inspired made-up song to (of course) the tune of the ABCs.

"Actually." - sometimes you lead with it, sometimes you punctuate with it, sometimes you use it to indicate agreement. ALWAYS, it is awesome.

"I'm a lucky boy." - your immediate response to a friendly cashier when she learned that you have two mommies. I'm not sure that anything could have prepared me for the rush of pride I experienced in that instant.

Merritt, we are so thrilled that you feel like a lucky boy. We need you to know that we are the luckiest mommas in the universe. We are so fortunate to be raising such a benevolent and altruistic little boy; so charmed to have you for our son. We love sharing fruit and cheese night and road trips and hide-n-seek and dental hygiene and dog-poop-scooping and cereal and showers and good movies and stories and life with you.

The other day, you called for a family hug and then gathered us, your little arms clutched around our knees, and said, "If we do it in a circle, that would be good." We scooped you up and we stood there, "doing it in a circle." Hugging. And my mind drifted back to a few mornings prior, when during a sweet snuggle, you put your hands on my cheeks, pulled my face to yours, and in the darkness of the new day whispered, "Keep me forever." A promise we've made to you every day of your life, whether spoken or not.

You don't know yet that you put us in a shape that has no beginning or end, the place where we will keep you forever.

Happy birthday to the best gift either one of us has ever received.


Momma & Mommy


kgfrazier said...

I agree with Merritt. He is a lucky boy.

Frazier's Family said...

Seriously, Katie-you've GOT to write a book. Every sentence you construct is splendid.

Also that kid is adorable. Happy 3rd to Merritt!

Nic said...

Awwww!! Precious.