Dear Hank,

You are three! But you are still my baby.
My stinker. My thinker. My sidekick. My slapstick. My tiny engineer.
My linguist. My dance partner. My wake up call.

My adventurer.
All I have to do is grab a coat or rattle the keys and you're the first one at the door wondering Am I going too?
We spent your birthday, today, in the woods. You wore rainboots and carried an enormous stick, until we spotted a flooded area, at which point you threw down the stick and dove in. You are a true Pisces, always ready to swim.

One of my favorite things to watch is the way your hair runs with you, the top bouncing with each step.

You like magnets and peanut butter and blue and bacon and shapes and scootering and letters and cantaloupe and making your brothers laugh.

You are a talker.
You jump ahead to the second sentence before getting to the period of the first, bursts of thoughts so impatient to get out.
You often comment on the weather. Sitting at the kitchen counter or in the back seat, you'll say What a beautiful day, like an invitation for more dialogue. Today, on the way up the hill and back to our house, boots sloshing and pants soaked, it was What a muddy day!
You want to be involved, to be included, to have a voice in the matter.

You have an affluent imagination. You make soccer balls out of pentagons, rainbows out of cones. You make snakes with ribbon and basketball hoops with kitchen colanders. You make us all so happy.

You are always reaching for answers. You want to know how things work, down to the smallest detail. You want to know why. And why again. You want to know how and when and if.

You are inefficient for my schedule, but good for my soul.
You, more than anyone, help me notice the startling abundance, the way good fortune becomes glaringly obvious when we stop wishing for more.
You breathe wonder into simple things.

You have impeccable manners. Seriously. Your No sank yous slay.

I hope some piece of three stays with you always, keeps you young at heart.
May you always remain tethered to the child carrying sticks and so many dreams, promoting curiosity and spontaneity and whimsy.

You are a huge part of our world, Hank, and you are everyone's favorite littlest brother.
You are deeply, and forever, loved.

1 comment:

rht said...

A muddy day and a cyan three -- what could be more perfect? Balloons and pizza with cousin John, big brothers and friends? Please count me in on the deeply and forever loved part -- Happy Birthday, Hank!