And that's exactly what I did. And four days after he was scheduled to make his debut, Munchkin finally joined the world outside my womb.
So today, in honor of his sixth birthday in this world, I present to you my "Six Things I Love About Munchkin" list. Sure, there's many more than six, but these ones are my absolute favorite things about my little boy.
- HIS SONGS. In fact, if I was more talented, a fitting tribute would be to set this to music of my own making and sing my list. I love the way Munchkin sings. He can hear a song once and memorize it. Of course, his songs of choice were from Thomas movies for a long time, but he's branching out now. When he plays by himself, he's either narrating his play, or singing a song. (In fact, right now he's playing with Action Links and humming the Smurf theme.) He often sings one octave higher than the rest of the world--but perfectly in pitch! It's hilarious and lovely at the same time. This year his language and imagination have both grown enough for him to start making up his own songs. And so he sets his requests, his refusals, his thoughts about his family, his thoughts in general to music now. (Such as the other day, when I said No, we can't stop for ice cream on the way home. And was then entertained for the twenty minute car ride with a lovely number about his love for ice cream, his favorite flavors, and his lack of understanding as to why mom won't get him ice cream when he wants it. It was gorgeous.)
- HIS GIGGLE. Have you heard this boy laugh? Not that fake "heh-heh" thing he does. No, that makes me nuts. No, I'm talking about his real laugh. It comes straight from his heart and literally explodes out of his mouth. He has made me forget why I'm mad at him more than once with that laugh. He's made me smile when I'm tired and laugh along with him. You can't hear him laugh without joining in! It's the most beautiful sound in the world, and you don't even have to work to solicit a laugh--he laughs all the time!
- HIS LACK OF RESERVATION. Sure, it's a little unnerving when he talks to perfect strangers everywhere we go. And I have to keep a super-close eye on him because he will walk off on a whim and be lost before I blink. But I love the way he just wants to interact with every part of his world. I love his friendliness, his curiosity, his self-confidence. And he can sure charm the ladies!
- HIS HUGS. You have not had a hug until you've had a Munchkin hug. He grabs you around the neck, wraps his legs around your waist, and hugs with his whole body. Long, tight squeezes with these happy little "mmmmm" sounds involved (from both of us!) His hugs fill his sensory needs on a practical level, but they also fill us both with love and happiness. If there was a way to bottle that feeling you get when he hugs you, I would carry it around with me for the times we're apart--he makes me feel that good with his hugs. And it's not just me--he gives them freely to everyone he loves! He usually follows his hugs with a kiss. We used to have a ritual--a kiss on each cheek, one on the forehead, one on the chin, and one on the nose. First me, then him. Now it's just a kiss on the nose. I love hugs and kisses from my guy!
- HIS MIND. He is a thinker. He wants to know how everything works. He wants to know why things happen. He asks a million and ten questions a day. He never stops talking. And yes, it makes me absolutely batty at times, but I am a teacher at heart and I love teaching my boy. He is smart--really smart--and his physical and verbal limitations don't always allow people to see that. But I see his mind at work everyday and I am amazed that my child is probably going to be smarter than I ever was!
- HIS JOYFUL HEART. Seriously, the child is always happy. Even when he's tired, or cranky, or sick--he bounces right back from it and reclaims his true nature. He has a huge smile that lights up the room. His eyes are usually twinkling with excitement or mischief. He jumps, runs, hops, skips, crashes, and tumbles his way around the world with so much energy and life. He loves everyone and everything unconditionally and is quick to forgive and forget hurts against him. He is honest and obedient and generous and kind. He is a beautiful child, inside and out.
There it is. Six things for my six-year-old. I love my Munchkin with my whole heart and thank God for him every single day. He has changed my life forever and taught me so much about myself. God knew what He was doing when He created this little boy just as he is, and placed him with us. I think ahead to the next six years, and then the next, and the next, and I have no idea what they will hold. But I look forward to finding out!
HAPPY BIRTHDAY, MUNCHKIN MAN!