Roanie. Roan Balogne. Roanie Balognie. I can still call you all of those things because you're only 10. Only 10. Wow. Ten. Double digits. I knew this day would come, I guess I just never expected it to feel like it's flown by.
Monday, May 21, 2001. Victoria Day. I worked until 5 p.m. My last day prior to going off on maternity leave. You were due on the 24th. I still had a few days to prepare. I was wrong. You came early. I remember everything to do with actually having you that night. I know 'they' say the second childbirth is always easier than the first and of course I was skeptical, but they were right. You were so much easier coming into this world than your brother. For me anyway. I remember thinking how appropriate it was that you were 7 lbs, 11 oz. since a regular hangout in your dad's and my teen years was 7-11. But what I remember most of all was looking into your brilliant face and meeting you for the very first time. I remember being afraid that I wasn't going to be able to love you like I loved Gage and being so glad that I was SO wrong. I felt an instant bond to you. I was immediately in love.
I remember the days to follow when I would feed you and just cry. Cry from the obvious influx of hormones but cry because you were so amazingly beautiful and precious and small and mine. Mine to protect and take care of. That uncertainty and fear that I wouldn't be successful in ensuring you remained safe in life. I'm sure every parent feels it at some point. I could sit and stare at you for hours on end. We spent many early morning hours alone together in a quiet house while everyone else slept. Just you and me, keeping each other company. You were the cutest baby I had ever laid eyes on.
You are my sensitive child. The one who wears his heart on his sleeve. The one who shows his love no matter what. The one who only sees the good in me, in all of your family (expect for Gage). You are one person who's love I will never question. You tell me and show me all the time. I hope I do you the same justice. Your sensitivity is what frightens me though. I worry that I'll be unable to protect you from the disappointments in life.
You are my child that will face uphill battles with a disorder you never deserved to inherit. I will fight everyone and everything each step of the way to ensure your life is made as simple as possible so you have just as many opportunities as the rest of the world. I don't want you to have to struggle through things the way your father had to growing up. There are means and solutions we can take advantage of to better your way of life and as your mother and protector I will ensure you have them. No one will ever love another human being like a mother loves her child. No man will ever understand the bond a mother shares with her child. And no one without their own children will ever understand the burning need a mother has to protect her child at all costs. Mothers sacrifice so many things in their own lives to ensure their children are happy and content and it's hard for us to cut the ties that bind. I may be guilty of being too easy on you but you're mine and I have every right to be easy and no one will take that away from me. And what I cherish the most about you right now in life, is that you still want to hug and kiss me goodnight.
I look to you and admire who you are already and you're only 10. You are a wonderful friend. A friend to everyone, no matter what. You do not judge and you are not cruel. You are helpful and kind. You are a good kid. There is nothing malicious about you. You don't do things just to hurt another person. It bothers me though that because you are these ways you generally expect that others are as well and I know in life, that's going to come back to bite you from time to time. You take people at face value and have a hard time seeing past their words to read their actual meanings.
I hope in my heart that you continue on the path you are currently and you remain a good person, who loves everyone. I hope you never lose your zest for knowledge or your desire to draw. I hope the little things will always excite you. And I hope you always see past people's faults and continue to love them with your whole heart despite our flaws. I hope I never disappoint you and I want you to know I will always be with you. I promise to cover your back, fight any battle along side you, wipe your tears, listen when you need to talk, look for the answers to your questions I don't know, kiss away your pain, hug you every day and make sure you always know how much I love you and adore you. I can't wait for the next decade together.