I wanted to write to you to let you know exactly how I felt today while watching you in therapy. Most weeks, the hour goes by quickly and I’m tasked with keeping you in a good mood while integrating various exercises. Some sessions are more productive than others. Months ago we first worked on rolling, then sitting, transitioning, then rocking on all fours to finally crawling and now we’re taking steps! For a long, grueling hour you will your little legs to work against your brain. Your steps are small, your legs criss-cross in front of one another and sometimes, rather than make forward progress, you simply appear to march in place. You try to keep a smile on your face, but I can tell when you’ve had enough. You start to fuss and whine. You act like you’ve forgotten how to move your feet in protest. We encourage you, sing to you and today I actually cheered “Here we go Caleb, here we go *clap*clap*”, so rest assured I am doing everything I can to help you learn to walk, with the exception of moving your legs for you. I plead with you to continue, just a few more steps. I want you to push the walker as far as you can go and then maybe two more steps after that. We’ll take breaks but you know they are short-lived cuddles between these not-so-fun tasks.
Today though, today was different. I truly felt bad. I just wanted to stop and tell the therapist to go home because you shouldn’t have to work as hard as you do. It’s just so damn unfair. You should be comfortably running around and independently maneuvering the stairs like your brother is. I whole-heartedly believe that you will reach all those milestones in your own time but for now, unlike most kids, we have to work hard for them. So even though my heart is breaking at the thought of you pushing yourself during therapy, trust me when I tell you that it’ll all be worth it. I see how proud you are when you learn something new and I think you’re well aware that there aren’t any obstacles that you can’t overcome! When the thought of you protesting therapy enters my mind and I start to feel sorry for our situation, I try to imagine the day that you walk into my outstretched arms by yourself (how will I ever let you go?) and know that we’re in this together and we’re capable of doing hard things, you and I.
You are the sweetest and kindest little boy with a smile that lights up any room. You’re like a tiny King Midas, but rather than turning items to gold, you have the ability to make every person you encounter fall absolutely in love with you, because yes, you are so incredibly special and lovable. I love being your mommy more than anything so believe me when I say there are awesome things in store for you, little man! Thank you for your continuous hard work and determination, Caleb. You’ve taught me more about myself in 18-months than I learned in my previous 27 years and for that I thank you. To say you’re an inspiration in my life would be such an understatement.
You’ve already accomplished so much and make us so proud everyday. We love you so much and have such big dreams for you. Please remember that when it feels like we’re continuously moving your toys six inches out of reach and making you work so hard.