May 27, 2016

Dearest Solomon,

It’s your first birthday, son!

One. 1. First. Uno. Solo. They say one is the loneliest number, but I’m not so sure.

I’ve thought about what I would write you for longer than I can remember. It is so strange to find myself without words when my mind is racing with things to say and my heart is overflowing with emotion. For once, I’m truly stumped. There’s just TOO MUCH.

This has been the most amazing year ever, by far. If there was remotely a theme to this year, by the way, it’s the number one. If you squint your eyes, it’s easy to see. Since you won’t be able to remember this year when you’re all grown up, let me try and tell you.

One Means Special

If one means anything, it means that it is unique. Whenever there’s just one of something, you know it’s special. There were a lot of unique experiences:

  • That moment we found out we were gonna be parents in Rotorua, New Zealand
  • That moment we learned you were going to be a boy
  • That moment you went from belly to baby
  • That moment time stood still as you opened your eyes to the world
  • Those moments you met each of your grandparents and the rest of your family
  • That moment when your eyes went wide and you rushed to me after a long trip away
  • That time you cried for 8 hours straight on a flight from London
  • That time you stole a book from your bookshelf to read yourself to sleep
  • That feeling of being completely scared and completely grateful all at the same time

One Means First

For many, one is synonymous with first — First!, first place, first of its kind. Everyone loves the first of things — we’re no different. There was no shortage of firsts this year.

  • First time I held you in my arms
  • First time you smiled, but probably had gas
  • First time I watched you on my own and I didn’t kill you
  • First time you slept through the night, but didn’t do it again for months
  • First time you willingly ate solid foods, but pretended you didn’t really like it
  • First time you gave me a hug, but was needed some place to put your head
  • First time you gave me a kiss, though you were probably trying to eat my face
  • First time you said something that sounded like a word, but totally wasn’t
  • First time you turned over when I wasn’t looking
  • First time you stood up, just before I walked out the door for a trip so I wouldn’t miss it
  • First time we did a Google Hangout and actually knew who I was

One Means Only

Another meaning of one, of course, is that it is the only thing of its kind. Your mom hated the idea of “Solo” as a nickname because she thought it was too lonely. And though being unique implies that something is the only instance of something, that doesn’t quite do it justice.

  • Only you could find a pair of socks the most interesting toy in the world
  • Only you could put anything in your mouth except actual food
  • Only you could sniff out a piece of technology in a room before you can even use said technology
  • Only you can remember where said technology is in the room the next time you return, just in case
  • Only you knows how to turn the page on cue, and sometimes off cue
  • Only thing that makes the day better, no what else is going on is you
  • Only way I can ever imagine the world is with you in it
  • Only you could be a baby and a papa at the same time
  • Only you could be ours

One Means Best

One, being the last or only, can often mean the best, aka The One. I’ve already said this year was the best one ever, here’s why:

  • Seeing you grow both physically and mentally, becoming your own little character
  • Knowing every day that you love us as you learn to show it
  • Bringing your mom and I closer together than ever before
  • Learning how to share more, openly, no matter who’s looking
  • Making the whole world make sense, finally

I know I’ve listed a lot of things here, son. I hope you know there could have been a million more but there’s not enough time and your old man is too old to remember them all. But I’ve got them locked away where it matters, in my heart.

I know they say one is the loneliest number, but one’s not lonely, it’s lovely.

Happy Birthday my Lil’Papa.

Love always,