Patrick Lawrence, every time I write your name, I smile. It's your daddy and my daddy all rolled into a tiny little you. I'm so glad you're here.
This has been a hard year, little man, so very hard in a lot of ways. I was the sickest I've ever been... my back has gotten so bad the doctor said I might never run again... I couldn't be there for your Gramps when he lost his mom... and I had to say goodbye to one of my favorite people in the world.
It would have been so easy to dismiss 2013 as a year we'd have been better off without.
...and then I held you. I touched your little cheek and kissed your tiny nose and everything hard and sad just melted away.
Thank you for being the promise of sunshine I could daydream about when everything seemed dark. I thought losing my Nana would shatter me. Thanks for being with me during that goodbye. I took care of myself for your sake even when I wouldn't have for my own. Thanks for that, little prince, and for giving us the gift of having a newborn in Italy.
Our neighbors are thrilled with your birth, and bring us food constantly so that I'll have plenty of milk for you. Men stop in the street to smile and pat your cheek. Cashiers leave their registers to hold you. Restaurant owners exclaim "auguri!" and come over to kiss your little feet and hands. I've fallen madly in love with you, little one, and this section of Napoli has, too.
|I ate approximately half of this|
Every day my heart feels full to capacity... and every night it must get bigger, because the next morning I wake up and somehow love you even more. I'm thrilled that you are here, sweet boy, and I couldn't love you more. ...at least until I wake up tomorrow :-)