My Guys

There are three of them and three of us.
Boy Girl Boy Girl Boy Girl
All the boys have birthdays right around Christmas.
One before, two after.
It makes for some crazy times around here, but it’s fun.

It sounds cliche to say, but it doesn’t seem possible that you are three years old.  You are my little buddy.  No matter where I go, you are never far behind.  You still like to be held and carried and cuddled – but only when you want to.  You are funny and tough and bull-in-a-china-shop all the time.  You fall and pop right back up.  You crash into the wall and keep on going.  Nothing phases you.  You love all of your siblings and being with them, but your favorite time of day seems to be when the bigs are gone to school and Alden takes a nap.  It’s one of the few times you have me to yourself and you relish every moment.  I do, too.  I love to watch you play.  You are so animated, with those enormous, sparkling eyes.  You are going to break some hearts with those.  It’s hard sometimes to get on to you when you do something wrong because of those eyes.  You are just so dang cute.  Lately when I tell you not to do something, you say “oh.” in a very short, staccato way that makes me laugh.  Even if you are doing something you know you shouldn’t do, when you get in trouble for it you just say “oh.” like you had no idea that it wasn’t allowed.  And when you ask to do something and the answer is no, you say ‘aaaaawwwww…’ in the most adorable way possible.  You hang your head down and slump your shoulders over and look like Opie Taylor.

Happy third birthday (a little late), bud.
I love you!

Dear Marshall,
As I write this, we’ve seen each other no more than about 2 hours today.  Your commitment to your work is something that I am proud of.  There have been times that I’ve been at my wits end with your schedule, but it’s hard to be mad when I see all the good that you are doing.  You don’t just have patients.  Every child that walks through the doors of your office is made to feel like royalty.  You are good at your job.  You are passionate about learning and keeping up with all the new recommendations and literature.  You don’t just walk into a room and rush through the exam, you are specific about educating parents and patients about why you are doing what you are doing.  You care.  You care a lot.  And it shows.

But you are so much more than your work.  You are a fabulous father and wonderful husband.  When you get home, you pick right up with helping around here.  It’s usually wild when you walk in the door – loud, hungry children, me trying to cook, dogs whining to go out – but you don’t let it bother you.  And just by you being in the room, it makes things better.  (I feel like I’m oozing cheesy right now.  (I am.)  But it’s true.)  I don’t thank you enough for all that you do.  Thank you so much.  I couldn’t do it without you.  Sharing this crazy life with you is truly one of my biggest pleasures.

I should stop now. I’m kinda making myself gag with all the cheese.
I love you.  Happy (belated) birthday.

Dear Carter,
You.are.amazing.  You are so smart and kind and funny.  I sometimes miss the little baby that you were, but I am so in love with the person you have become.  You are so grown-up all of a sudden.  You crawled into your Daddy’s lap tonight and said, “When I’m eight years old, I’ll be too big for this.”  And I know there will come a time when you really are too big to crawl into our laps, but I most certainly hope it’s not next year.

I love your passion for learning.  You seem to soak up every piece of information that you hear.  You know more about planets and space and stars than I do.  You love math so much that you asked for math workbooks for your birthday.  When it comes to learning, you are wise beyond your years.  But the thing I love most is that you are still a kid.  You still love to play with cars and draw with chalk and ride your scooter and now your bike, too.  I’m so proud of you for learning how to ride your bike.  It didn’t come easy for you (and you aren’t used to that) and at one point you looked into my eyes and there were tears welling up in yours and I told you, “You can do this!  You can.”  And you, completely seriously said, “But Mama…tricky peddling is much trickier than tricky math.”  But you conquered tricky math and tricky peddling and now you proudly zoom by us all.  Seeing your smile when you finally got the hang of it was priceless.

Happy (late) birthday, my super seven year old.
I love you.

2 Responses to My Guys
  1. Pops
    January 28, 2012 | 11:45 am

    Carter learned about the tricky brakes after he did the tricky peddling and after he crashed into the shrub tree at the corner of the carport but he got the hang of that also.
    When you came home from Athens and told your momma and me that you had found the person you were going to marry I thought, “Yeah right” but I must say that I could not have hand picked anyone better for a son in law.
    And little Asa…what can you say about that one except, “That’s my boy”. Rough and tough yet loving and gentle all wrapped into one little ball of excitement.
    You did well on all 3 accounts here and you didn’t let the girls slide either. You have a great family and I am proud to be a part of it.

  2. Marshall
    January 29, 2012 | 10:49 pm

    We do have two great boys, don’t we? Any my girls are pretty fantastic themselves! At the risk of continuing the cheese-fest, I also could not have picked better in-laws. Obviously they raised you pretty well! 🙂

    You are an unbelievable mother, wife, friend, photographer, and I love you more every day. (cue sappy music).