I fell in love with him when he was less than the size of a grain of rice. Barely a concept that I could get my head around. Practically a non-entity.
I fell in love with him as he used me as his personal customized gym. It seemed as though he needed more room and I was hard-pressed to find it. Sometimes it hurt as he tumbled and twisted.
I fell in love with him he was pulled from my body, red, angry and hollering to be back in the wombed warmth.
I fell in love with him as my eyes poured over his newness, checking every millimeter of his body. Amazed at the miracle he was. Perfect in my eyes.
I fell in love with him as he observed me, on some level understanding that this was not our first meeting, only a different perspective. We had known each other in an impossibly intimate way that defied explanation. He eyes were youthful, yet old and wise. My teacher had arrived.
I fell in love with him as he snuggled up close, comfortable in the crook of my neck. His dark downy head and infant breath warmed my skin. Being inside of me was no longer an option. We ached for that connection that was uniquely ours. This was next best thing for both of us. We adjusted.
I fell in love with him as he nourished himself from my body, in awe that he thrived and grew because of what I could provide for him.
I fell in love with him as he hit his milestones, each on the early side. He showed a tendency for gathering and exploration. His quest for knowledge knew no boundaries (and still doesn’t). Why, How, What, When, Where and How Come peppered his speech. He was an archaeologist in pursuit of answers.
I fell in love with him when my mother (his Lizzie) died. He took my hand and, with it, my shattered heart, asking me to pray with him for her.
I fell in love with him as he, without hesitation, took each of his siblings out of my arms in order to claim them as his, to pridefully show-and-tell anyone who would pay attention that these babies were his brother and sisters.
I fell in love with him upon hearing that he had escorted an elderly man across the street, without being prompted, with all of the patience and concern of a mature adult.
I fell in love with him when I witnessed him reach out to a Hispanic man in need of help with directions. In Spanish he gave a thorough explanation and drew an accompanying map.
I fell in love with him as he periodically checked up on his cousin circling around the drain of crisis.
I fell in love with him as he kept a calm head after an accident. It wasn’t easy have composure while an out of control man ranted threats and angry racial epitaphs at him.
I fell in love with him last night as all of his lanky six-foot-two hugged me and wished me a good night.
I fell in love with him again as called me this morning from school, “Mom, I missed you before I left for school. I just wanted to tell you I love you.”
I love you too. More than you can ever know.