my dear sweet boy
never lose your tenderness. be brave enough, be strong enough to be a tenderhearted man in your generation. it is a beautiful quality of yours, something i love most about you, even if it is often misunderstood. it isn’t weakness or shyness to be tenderhearted. our Savior is tenderhearted, and maybe those with tender hearts see those that others pass over so quickly–the lost, broken, hurting. it takes tenderness to extend compassion. so don’t let a cruel hard world pound out of you your tender heart. stay soft, stay breakable.
my, what a year you’ve had. you have literally transformed before our eyes. maybe this is so unusual to us because our phoebe girl grows so slowly, but you are surpassing her this year. you are really growing up! you moved into your own boy room, and have since loved the privacy that gives you, even though you don’t love being alone in the dark of night. you’ve begun to battle nightmares almost nightly, and often come snuggle with us in our bed. it’s the first time, though, that i’ve really seen you turn to the Lord in prayer on your own. you are beginning to learn to pray on your own to your Heavenly Father, and not to be afraid to speak freely to Him.
this morning i said, “noah! you’re not three anymore!” and you said, in a distinctively more grown-up-sounding voice, “i know but i still call you momma.”
you love playing with your sisters, and do so well with both of them. your favorite things lately are to play that you are dogs, running around in the house and yard on all fours, and to play drums constantly to whatever music we have going in the house. you are addicted to movies much to my chagrin. 🙂 you have learned so much alongside phoebe in our first year of home educating, and i can tell you are so bright and eager. you still love to be tickled to tears before bedtime, as you always always have, and you love to be sung to. you love trucks and cars endlessly. you love to help me in the kitchen, really to help with any task.
i am so so proud of you, son, so thankful that God gave us you. you came quietly on this december day four years ago, but with so much drama somehow at the same time. what a champ you were as your momma struggled to recover in the weeks following your birth. i especially want to tell you that i’m very proud of you for the way you have loved phoebe in all her health battles this year, being protective of her and looking out for her. the way you told her you missed her while she was gone to winston salem. it’s not easy having to bend to someone with a special dietary need, and yet you do it quietly and with such a good attitude. thank you, son! your daddy and i adore you more than we can ever ever say and we thank God for the gift of you!
happy fourth birthday, my favorite boy with the best giggle!