Mom in Manolos_Mason_Washington, D.C.

Dear Mason,

It’s 8:24 p.m. on a Tuesday night. Dada and I are catching up on Netflix with both of our laptops open. You are fast asleep upstairs and as per usual, I peer into your crib via the trusty baby monitor every half hour or so. That’s a habit I haven’t been able to shake.

I picked you up from daycare around 5 p.m. tonight and we headed to the grocery store. We saw a sign with a zebra on it and after gently correcting you that it was in fact a “zee-brah” and not a horse, you said “hug it?” And for the 20th time today, my heart melted.

You are blossoming in your second year of life. You’re blossoming into “you” and with each day that passes, I realize what a privilege it is to witness a little human come into their own. Yes, even during a perfectly timed blowout before the morning rush, tantrums that end up with one or both of us on the floor crying, and the 4 a.m. wake up calls (thanks, developmental leaps).

Beginning on the morning Dada and I spent jumping up and down in the kitchen when we found out about you, I started thinking about all my hopes and dreams for you. But during these past almost two years, I’ve whittled those hopes and dreams down to just one.

Pursue what lights up your soul.

One day, you will stumble upon something that flips a switch inside of you. It may not seem logical, it may seem random. This is how you will know you’ve found it.

If you’re anything like me, and I can only hope I’ve passed on the better parts (I think you already have my stubbornness, sorry), you might spend years searching for it. But let me assure you, “it” has always been there — popping up randomly, waiting for the perfect time when you are truly ready to pursue it with reckless abandon. Pursue it as soon as you recognize it.

The secret to life is truth — being who you truly are. Be illuminated and you’ll inspire illumination.

As your mother, I can only try my best to steer you in the right direction, make sure you have manners and teach you that you can’t eat the dog’s food. At some point, I will have to let go (a little) so that you can realize who you are.

There is nothing that will make my heart prouder than seeing you light up — and I will forever be your cheerleader, not just quietly on the sidelines but on the field. Louder and prouder than anyone else. Always.

I love you more,

Mom in Manolos_Washington, D.C._Mason

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