And now he is 2.
I think I did better with this birthday than his first. We had the pool party, people actually came, and we celebrated with pizza and a big cake. Much better than his single cupcake with one candle and a lonely mom last summer.
This is still a day that matters more to me than to him, at this point anyway. He's a happy-go-lucky, easygoing kid -- his birthday day will be one like many others: We went to the park and walked the dog this morning, took a nice long nap and now we're off to the Natural History Museum to see the moon rocks and animals.
But I can't help but remember this day in North Carolina where he was born, the long labor that preceded it, the family and friends that were around to welcome him into the world. Such a challenge and such a reward.
I am so happy that I became a mother. Just as much the second time as the first.
But we've seen a lot of changes over the last two years, and I guess that this day always makes me think of life before kids and before we made the big move to D.C. I am no more than ambivalent about our move here to the city.
In two years, I don't know that I've fully integrated the changes of becoming a mother, leaving the workforce, and moving away from family and friends to a cold (welcoming, not weather) city. But I'm trying. I'm really trying.
I don't regret a single decision I've made alone, or with the Cap'n as a family. I will probably always wonder what would have been if we would have stayed in NC and made it our home. But even as I write this, I know that I would have regretted the decision to stay there more because we would not have had the opportunities we've had here, for the Cap'n at work and for me to stay home with the kids.
In some ways, having kids has made me feel more empowered and confident than anything I've ever done before (or probably will since). And on the flip side, it has uncovered all the uncertainties and anxieties I've ever harbored about being "good enough" too.
The responsibilities of these two tiny human beings makes me want to strive to do my utmost, very best every moment with them, and it makes me realize that I'll never be perfect and will probably fail more times than I succeed.
But it makes me want to strive. And I truly believe striving to be your best is at the heart of the best relationships.
I hope my boys will always know that I want to be my best for them. And that I love them with all my heart.