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Happy fourth birthday, my little man!

Carlotta Cerri
Salva

My sweet little monkey,

Today you turn four, and there’s something I want to tell you: I have one huge regret in my short life as a mama, and it involves you. When Emily was born, your daddy started being with you more, while I dedicated more time to Emily. It happened very naturally, I was relieved to have help, Emily was happy with me, you were happy with daddy and surprisingly never jealous of your little sister. Win win win win.

But I soon realized that the change had made you shift away from me—it was already too late, you had become 100% daddy’s boy, and I felt like I’d “lost” my little monkey. It hurt me.

In the letter I wrote to you last year for your third birthday, I made you a promise—to be ever-changing and the person you need me to be—and in these 365 days, while doing everything in my power to keep that promise, I learnt so much about you.

I learnt to see the world through your eyes—all of it, feelings, emotions, crisis, relationships, conflicts, especially conflicts. I learnt that you need less words, you talk to me when you have something to tell me. I learnt that when you do talk, it’s my chance to connect and I always try to take it. I learnt that you don’t like me to ask for hugs and kisses, you’ll give them when you feel them. I learnt that your sense of justice is very strong, and to apologize even when I wouldn’t find it necessary—with every “I’m sorry” I learn something new about you. I learnt that your being introverted fades the more confident you become, and I admire you silently as you gain confidence. I learnt that your sensitivity goes so far as to not wanting to eat meat anymore because “I don’t like when people kill animals”. I learnt to love you not the way I want, but the way you need me to. To love you better, not more.

And it’s making all the difference (I know you feel it, too).

The more I learn about you, the better I understand you, the more you let me in, the better I love you, the more we connect, the more I learn about you. I’m loving every bit of it. So here’s this year’s promise: I won’t break this cycle. I’ll keep learning more and more about you, and adapting myself to the amazing person that is developing in front of my eyes. I’ll show you that I can be one of your safe harbors, always, forever and everywhere we go (which might be literally everywhere this year!).

I love you more and more every second.

Happy birthday, my little man.

Mamma

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