Oh, my Aidan-Monster

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Oh, my Aidan…
How did you turn 6? Who said it was okay from you to leap from the world of little boys and “T” sizes all the way to a full-fledged boy? Not me, that’s for certain.
Aidan, you are the most passionate of our children. I’ll never know how that tiny body can hold so much emotion. Whether you’re clenching your fists with anger, or swallowing me whole with a hug, you do everything with your whole heart. Some people might tell you to “even out” so that your mood swings don’t quite have mountainous range, but not me. That nature is going to make you one heck of a man some day. I know you’ll have the strength of your convictions, and that protective instinct you have will make you an amazing husband and father. So don’t stop feeling things the way you do. You see, that nature is the one part of me that you have. Well, that slightly wacky intensity and your blue eyes. That’s mama.
But the rest of you… now that’s daddy. You are your father’s son in every way. You are his image, his body type, and his smile. You are his attitude and reckless fearlessness. You are stubborn to the point that it’s just funny. You don’t really devote yourself to many people, but when you do, it’s your whole heart; just like your dad. You are every bit of your daddy just in a smaller, more compact package.
On years like this when he’s away, you are a constant reminder of him, and I adore you for it. You’ll give me a look that will simply send me into laughing hysterics, because it’s like your father is staring right back at me.
Aidan, sometimes I feel like you get the short end of the stick. You’re always a bit of a loner, always content to sit by yourself or color quietly. You’re always the helpful one, helping to carry in groceries, or hold Chase’s hand to the car. You’re also the only baby not to have daddy home when you first walked, or talked, and now you’re the only boy to have Dad missing two of your birthdays. I’m so sorry, Aidan, and I hope that you forgive us for the sacrifices you’ve had to make.
I’m so proud of you and how you’re growing. You got sandwiched between two brilliant brothers, and I kept hearing that you were going to appear “slower” because you were “normal.” To this, I say, “PFFFFT!” When you curl up next to me and read me your school work, or read me whatever else, I know you’re just as brilliant as Aaron and Chase. You just don’t need to show it off. You learn when you want to, and until you make that choice, it’s a little bit useless to push. But when you make that choice, you learn faster than any of our other kids. I can’t wait to see where this takes you.
I know you’re a “middle-child.” I know that you might need a little extra loves every now and then, and you’ll always need to feel like something makes you stand out. But I hope you know that to me, you’ll always stand out. You’re beautiful, both inside and out, and your light shines so brightly that it will be difficult for anyone to overlook you. There’s a reason you’re the favorite of so many…
I love you, Aidan-Monster. Happy Birthday, baby.

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