Pardon me while I go curl up in my bed and rock back and forth. Someone grab a paper bag: I’m hyperventilating.

I CANNOT believe he is five. There is something about the fifth birthday, as it gives him a ticket to kindergarten, Jack sees this fifth birthday as crossing over from little kid to big kid. This birthday, the big 0-5 feels like a change. It’s the beginning of a huge change. He becomes a child of the world. Soon he will no longer be my little preschooler.

Clearly the first change was becoming a mother. The role of Mommy has been the most challenging, most rewarding and most emotionally moving experience of… ever.

I have written many times about the
challenges surrounding Jack’s birth.but today what strikes me most is not where we started (c-section… for those of you, like my mother, who refuse to click imbedded links) but how far we have come.

Jack has always been a constant. He is predictable (at least he is to me, my husband would tell another story). He is level-headed. I took time to grow into my role of mother. We went to swim class, music class, story time at the library, and mom’s group but I think I started to feel like I knew what I was doing… last week?

Maybe I will never know what I’m doing, but I’m finally confident in following my instincts. He is the perfect child to be my parenting test pilot. He is honest enough to tell it like it is, and sensitive enough to understand discretion. For all the head butting we are destined to do, I know I can always trust him to dig his heels in when it really matters and let go whenit doesn’t. He is, after all, my son.

So, Jack, I write you this letter of love:

20130131-234138.jpg Dear Jack,
My biggest guy, my number one, my first born: You are fierce. You are fearless, never hesitating to question how or why.

20130201-000044.jpgYou are a loyal friend. You always try to be fair and kind.

20130201-000054.jpgYou are wildly adventuresome when the rest of us can handle it, and yet quiet and reserved when Henry and Maggie need solidarity and support.

20130201-000111.jpg You and I have grown together, sure. But you have grow up so much.

20130201-000143.jpgParticularly this past year. You are still a wild guy, taking life by the horns and all that,

20130201-000351.jpgyou are starting to reflect as much as you participate.

20130201-000722.jpg You love science and drawing and making plans. You are a patient artist and a true foodie.

20130201-003202.jpg For all the complaining I do, and WILL do about you. You are perfect.

Stay awesome.

I hope fiveis as good to you as the first four have been for me.