1. You believe things are worth fighting for.
From day one your main focus has been to excel, to win at whatever you are doing. This doesn’t necessarily mean literally fighting (though that does occasionally happen too) but you’ve always worked hard and refused to back down when there’s something you want. That remains the same. I love the intensity it gives you. You are continuously focused, practicing, watching, asking questions, learning. You give everything you have to everything you do. It often makes my life difficult, because no one is going to win every.single.thing they do all day long, but that’s never stopped you from trying.
But, if middle ground isn’t going to be an option with you, I’m glad you chose to be a fighter. More people should put a higher value on going after what they want. There’s enough apathy in the world.
2. You make friends more easily than nearly anyone I’ve ever met.
This is one more thing in the very long list of ways we are nothing alike, and another thing I love about you. You are such a people person. You like nearly everyone: girls or boys, older or younger, those you’ve known forever or never even spoken to. It doesn’t matter. As specific as your own interests are, you’re continuously surprising me when I find you trying (and loving) something totally new with some new friend. You love your friends and you have a lot of them, but you also love Lex’s friends and Israel’s. A whole room of girls? You’re pretty much in heaven hanging out with all Azia’s friends, too. I expected this in about ten years, but you’ve loved her friends since you could walk fast enough to follow them around.
3. You seem to believe eating only cold cereal is a perfectly acceptable diet.
We must plant a garden. Or at least a handful of vegetables which we’ll teach you to cook yourself . Your diet still consists of mainly very small amounts of processed sugar with a little bit of fresh fruit thrown in. (Which could aggravating behaviors like those mentioned in #5.) I think you go days eating only cold cereal, jelly sandwiches and apples. Though it’s been a year now since trying vegetables made you literally puke, that may only be because you haven’t deviated from your cereal-jelly-apple diet. However, you are interested in food you’ve grown (or watched grow) yourself. This seems to be an extension of my earlier discovery that the only food with vegetables you’d try was things you’d help make. You still wouldn’t really eat it, but you’d at least try it. This year you were actually even interested in trying things you picked from your yaya’s garden. Maybe having you be more involved in your food broaden the options for you.
4. You like order. Things have a place and need to be where they belong.
I love this. You, more than any of the kids, like your room clean. When we have it organized it stays that way for weeks whereas it’s a matter of minutes when it comes to your sister. I’m not very good at maintaining routines and everyone’s individual organization, but hopefully we’re improving. You’re happier when things have a place, tasks have an order, and your environment and expectations are clear.
5. Now. It’s basically when everything needs to be done.
You don’t really have any patience. For anything. If you are hungry, tired, bored, want to start something. Now is nearly always the best time to address that concern. Not only is it the best time, there IS NO OTHER TIME THAT WILL WORK. If I’m putting dinner on the table and you are hungry, there is simply no way you can wait till I walk across the room and we sit at the table. You must eat the apple sitting in front of you on the counter right this second. This waiting around that the rest of the world always seems to be doing, it really tests the control you have over your temper.
6. Your laugh
It’s high & loud, but raspy & staccato and surprises me nearly every time I hear it, even though I hear it every day. It always makes me smile and often even laugh out loud. For some reason it’s still not what I expect, but you can’t mistake it for anything but giddy happiness.
7. You are kind and gentle.
You love playing rough, but you also love hugs. When you sit beside me it’s often snuggled in as close as you can get. You so love physical, rough play I sometimes forget you are also very affectionate. You shift your approach effortlessly depending on the situation. There’s Lex who does what he does no matter the company, the place, the or appropriateness of his actions and then there’s you on completely the other end of that spectrum. You are highly aware. You’ll be throwing punches one moment and then take off the gloves to cuddle a kitten the next. You are always soft with little animals and babies. You love gently helping people who aren’t as old or strong as you. Though I don’t think you realize it yet, you seem to understand there are all sorts of ways to show your strength.