As of May 9th, I have been the proud (most of the time) owner of my youngest child. And let's face it. As parents we completely own these children and are responsible for turning them into caring, hard-working adults.
Throughout my pregnancy I prayed for a 'typical' child. We didn't know if we would have that prayer answered. I think you could say that we did though in the sense that he doesn't have disabilities like David has. But what we got was so much more than 'typical'. I'll take a word out of Kyle's favorite list of vocab here and say he's pretty epic.
That first year was trying for us. He ate well and he slept through the night at 6 weeks. But he cried ALL the time when he was awake. Some people thought he had colic. I could tell this was a personality driven cry. The first year is a little blurry to this mom to be honest. I know there were great moments, but the crying overshadowed a lot of them.
But then the clouds parted and the sun started to shine. Because when he turned 1, he was a brand new kid. Independence was the name of the game for him.
He got himself into some precarious positions in the house. He required an eye on him at all times. If he was quiet, it was trouble. He was curious about the world around him. He even escaped the house around 1 1/2, but didn't get too far. And Webster stayed by his side the entire time.
Age two. His love of outdoors came. It was where I could snap the best pictures of him. Because he was in his element being outdoors. He would have lived outside if he could. He also had his first of several ring bearer gigs and learned to rock a tux.
Three year old Kyle was my favorite age. The things that came out of his mouth both shocked and humored me. He met his best friend when he was 3. And they are still best friends, despite being in different states. Preschool started at age 3. He gave us joy in a year that was quite challenging with David. I am forever grateful for that.
At four....he became too smart for his own good. I couldn't fault his ability to be able to tell when I was possibly telling a little fib in order to get him in the house or get him to eat or to clean his room. He became quite insightful. We spent a lot of time together since he no longer qualified for the preschool program here. He was my constant.
Five. Started school, made new friends. Had a hard time completing tasks at school. At home, he was fine. He was doing things that he enjoyed here, and while he was slow getting ready, I didn't grasp what that meant for him at school yet. He enjoyed kindergarten and showed us that he was a bright kid with a love for books by the end of the year. And had his other 2 ring bearer gigs this year.
At six he started first grade. And his love of reading really took off as he read books all the time independently now. We still struggled with focus and attention though while doing things that didn't come easily to him. We started trying other methods to reward him for staying on task. And they worked. For a little while. Then the methods stalled. But he continued to show me his strong personality and true heart. Looking back at pictures, I can see this is the year where he took more of an interest in David and started to become his protector. He adored him and David adored any attention he threw his way.
Second grade and age 7 brought us his diagnosis of ADD. We started medication for him after trying so many other options that didn't work time after time. The difference in him was amazing. He could really shine in his abilities of reading and spelling at school and it helped him with his weakness in math. I feel this year he found a little self-confidence that had been missing.
The kid he became at age 8 was just a better version of the Kyle from the previous year. He fully embraced his brother and our family. It became apparent to him this year that we are a little different from other families. Most of the time he was ok with that. Other times, he struggled. But his heart grew a lot this year.
This past year has been so good for him. I feel like he has learned so much being 9. He is still working on becoming confident in his own skin and navigating a new school and a group of friends that changes. He's friendly to everyone and I'm proud of him for that. He has to learn a little more about give and take with his friends and family, but we're working on that. His love of books is at an all time high and he reads everything. Except for the Captain Underpants books. He has it in his head that he won't like those. Haha. But he is taking everything around him in and absorbing the world as much as he can. He went to camp for the first time last summer and is going back again this summer. He is continuing to grow as an individual and a member of this family. I hope his love of running grows and makes him want to push for his goals. I hope his love of tigers and all other animals pushes him to be compassionate towards all living things and maybe one day he can have a career in the field of animals.
Happy 10th Birthday Kyle Matthew. You are epic. Continue to become more epic at 10 than you were at any other age, but enjoy the journey. Your life will be what you make of it and I know you will make it great.