My darling, sweet, strong little boy. Today, you are 6. I can't quite believe it. Six years ago today, you came into the world, and gave me the most important title - mom. And I am so lucky every single day to be your mother.
This year has been a year of major transformations. You have grown so so much. This past year, you have found and embraced your independence. You no longer need me to hold your hand and walk you to the playground. Instead, you are up bright and early and head over there with your friends. There's no more pushing you on the swing or supporting you on the monkey bars. You have conquered the playground, in all its glory. And this summer, you learned to ride your bike without training wheels, which opened up a whole new world of possibility for you. Instead of being confined to our alley, you now have the freedom to race around the block with all your friends. If I'm being honest, it is all quite bittersweet. I am so proud of you, and I'm proud that I can trust you with these little freedoms and know that you'll follow the rules and boundaries. But I'm also a little sad, because this new found freedom means that you're growing up, and that the last of your "babyness" is really gone for good.
You've also become quite a responsible little boy this year. So responsible in fact, that your dad and I got you a hamster for your birthday. And while I wasn't sure if you could handle it at first, you've proven me quite wrong. Every day you give that little guy fresh food, and water, and play with him. And you don't argue when it's time to clean his cage, even though be both know how stinky that job is. You have a list of chores to do everyday, and you (mostly) complete them without argument. You (usually) decide to save your allowance, and have become such a huge helper around the house.
You have also become such a wonderful big brother. I know that your sister gets on your nerves sometimes, but you rarely let is show. If the house gets too quiet, I can usually find you upstairs playing house or babies with your sister, even when I know you'd rather build Legos. You are so patient and kind to your sister, and try so hard to calm her down when she gets upset. And my sweet boy, I know you don't always see it, but your little sister worships the ground you walk on. She would follow you to the ends of the earth. And I'm so proud to say that you are an excellent role model for her. Being the oldest child can comes a lot of responsibilies, but you are meeting each one with strength and grace.
As wonderful as this past year has been, it has not been without its challenges. Shortly after your fifth birthday, you were officially diagnosed with ADHD. And that was a hard blow for both of us, baby. Your momma cried. Oh, how I cried. After talking with every doctor who would listen, we finally decided to try medication. It took us quite a bit of trial and error to find out what was right for you. I was unsure at first, but it has turned out to be one of the best things we could have done for you. The medicine has helped you so much. Before, you were struggling to learn your ABC's, and now you are nearly reading. You had begun to hate school, and now you get up in the morning and are so excited to get to school. The medicine hasn't changed who you are, but it has helped you to show the smart, lovable boy that I know. This past year, I have watched your confidence soar, and it takes my breath away. Everyday you come home from Kindergarten and tell me all of the new wonderful things that you've learned, and my heart swells. Together, we have learned to reframe what others wrongly call a "disorder", and embrace your endless energy and creativeness.
Oh, my darling boy, how you have changed this year. You've transfromed from a boy who needed help, to a child who is always willing to help. You've transformed from an unsure preschooler to confident Kindergartener. And I see the amazing young man that you are becoming. And I am so proud of you. But the one thing that has not changed is your heart of gold. And my sweet boy, I pray you never outgrow that.