"Iii looove you."
Your soft voice drifts in the darkness down from the upper bunk to the lower bunk where I lay beside your older brother.
"I love you too baby. Sweet dreams."
Adrian, "He always says that at night."
It's true. Even after our good night smooch and hug, the i love you's and i'll see you in the mornings, you still tell me you love me just before you drift off to sleep.
It's two days before the fourth year of celebration of you coming into our lives. It always strikes me as amazing the clarity with which I can recall the day of your Birth.
You took your time. 5 days over your due date but the night before you came into this world I slept lightly with contractions throughout the night.
The next morning I knew it was time and with all arrangements made to take care of Adrian off your Daddy and I drove to Mississauga to get you born. It was incredibly emotional, exciting and only slightly nerve wracking as I knew what to expect already. Except we didn't know if you were going to be a boy or a girl which was the best surprise yet to come.
The announcement of the nurses voices calling out, "It's a BOY!", the sob that choked my throat, the tears of happiness that burned my eyes. The feeling of your slippery, warm body in my hands, in my arms and against my chest. The sound of your insistent beautiful raw wails.
You got a 10 on the apgar score. And although I'm still not quite sure what that even means, I know that they don't give them out often and I knew it was a good thing.
You, my dear boy, had a great set of lungs in you.
I could not have asked for an easier birthing.
Here you were.
Here we began.
Your father and I had picked out half a dozen names of which Finley was one. As soon as I saw you, I looked at your Dad and said, "He's a Finley. Finley Alexander."
You were an extraordinarily easy baby. I recall only a couple times that you cried for longer than a few minutes in that first year. And those times were when you were teething or hot. Can't really blame you there.
You were happiest slung on my hip of-course. I carried you EVERYWHERE. Sometimes it feels like I still do.
I remember the first time I heard you laugh...hard. You were just about 9 months. It was a deep down in the belly laugh. Aren't those the greatest?
Unless it's because you're laughing at your older brother who happened to trip, fall and do a faceplant on the driveway.
Then I began to
Oh and it's come.
Child. Oh child of mine. You are a bundle of dichotomy's. Where do I begin?
You are so quiet, shy and unassuming yet the scream that comes out of you when you're excited, pissed off or just plain wanting to get on my nerves is enough to make the neighbours ears bleed.
You are heartbreakingly gentle to all small creatures, whether it's a dragonfly, a ladybug, a snail or a potato bug yet the ninja moves you come at me with some days make me wonder where that sweet soul momentarily disappeared to.
You come across as quite serious at times yet you have no problems pulling out your, "I'm Sexy and I know it" moves while singing the lyrics at the top of your little lungs and wiggling your little naked bum.
You are, in fact, one of the goofiest people I've ever had the pleasure of knowing.
You are a laid back little guy yet feisty when you feel you haven't been heard. It's so very important to you to be heard. When I hear you demand at the tender age of three to "Listen to what I'm saying!" you bet I will stop and listen to what you have to say.
Your imagination is something to watch. One of my favourite things to listen to is you playing with your little superheroes or lego characters.
You find the most random objects to fixate to and play with for days or weeks until something else will strike your fancy.
Though you've always loved music, lately you are becoming quite the little musician. Whenever we play one of your favourite songs - usually by Owl City - you'll retrieve your box of 'song toys' and drag out the little ladybug with the bright yellow and orange drumsticks and just get lost in the music while mouthing the lyrics. I don't know why but watching you do this makes me cry. A happy cry of-course.
You are a Noticer. I try to refrain from hurrying you or becoming exasperated with all of your questions about every little thing you come across, wish to know about, pick up, look at and/or question. I try to take time with you, not to rush you, answer all of your questions with loving patience. I try. But I don't always succeed. I always thought I was a Noticer too. Perhaps I was as a child but adulthood sloughed away at it until the world around me became slightly dull and blurry. Since you've come into my life I've found glimpses of that little girl again. Thank you. Thank you for that my love.
Thank you for making me laugh. Every day. Sometimes a dozen times.
Thank you for your feisty sweetness.
Thank you for your innumerable daily kisses and hugs.
Thank you for bestowing me with your beautiful bright smile every morning.
Thank you for singing. Your sweet little boy voice has got nothing on Justin Timberlake.
Thank you for being sensitive. Don't ever let anyone tell you there's anything wrong with that. The world could do with a helluva lot more sensitivity.
Thank you, most of all, for being who you are. Unique, easy going, smart, goofy, loving, polite, inquisitive and simply wonderful.
There is only one four year old boy like you. And I love every little bit of him.
Big Much. And so, so, SO much more than you'll ever know.
I hope you always know that. I hope I succeed in showing you that, always.
Happy Birthday Sweet Fin. May this one be your sweetest yet.