In just a few hours time it will be your first birthday. This time last year I was in a massive amount of pain trying to bring you into this world. I knew I couldn't wait to meet you but nothing could have prepared me how many adventures this year would bring us!
You came into the world dramatically yet quietly after 3 long days of labour. You didn't make a sound when you made your grand entrance. You got whisked away from me and for a moment my heart stopped just waiting to hear a noise from you. I will never forget seeing your dad giving me the thumbs up from the crowd of baby doctors working around you quickly followed by your first cry. You had arrived, you were breathing and I actually got you out! They brought you back to me and all I could do was stare at you for hours on end.
Everyone warned us that when you arrived our lives would be turned upside down. You will never sleep again, you will never shower again, you will never go out again. The list goes on. They got one thing right and that was that you WOULD change our lives but you didn't turn it upside down, you turned it the right side up. We have most certainly had challenges and neither of us are who we used to be but we are happier and better for having you in our lives. You have (for the most part) slept, I do shower everyday even if its not very relaxing and although I don't go out allot I love every minute of being at home.
For the last year whilst you have been teaching me how to be a mum I have worked on teaching you all the tasks I can. From rolling, sitting, crawling, talking and walking. I am sure the next decade will be full of lessons (and Im sure you will teach me some too)
So here are a few of my life lessons to you. By the time you are old enough to read these I will have hopefully got them engraved into your mind and you will know them by heart.
1. Put the toilet seat down!!! It's my pet hate and most other women's too. If you can't remember to do that then please just sit.
2. Be Kind and considerate always. Even to people you don't know. You don't know whats going on in their lives and everyone deserves a chance. If your being kind affects one person in a positive way then that person will always remember you and learn from you.
3. Think before you speak. Think not only about what you want to say but how you can say it without hurting that person. Humans are easily wounded and one wrong comment that you may think is funny could stay with someone forever.
4. Be honest. If you make a mistake then stand up and own up to it. You will get far more respect from people by admitting your mistakes and working to make them better.
5. Be polite and help others. Open the door, offer your seat and help people who need help. Never let anyone tell you that holding a door open to a lady or offering your seat to a pregnant women is sexist. Even if the person telling you is the one you are trying to help. Being a true gentleman will never age.
6.If you have got my genes and you cant dance....dance anyway! Don't let anyone tell you that you are rubbish. The worst dancers have the best fun. Just remember ask me for some moves.
7. You need to struggle. Its the only way we learn how to be better. I hope you fail from time to time and I hope you struggle when you start your new journeys. You need to struggle to appreciate what you have later on. You need to pick yourself up every time you take a tumble and keep going. Your failures will shape who you are going to become.
8. Never let anyone tell you that you cant do something. Unless its me or your dad of course! You are capable of doing whatever you want to do and you can do it if you work hard.
9.The women is always right. Especially if she is your mum, partner/girlfriend/wife. Suck it up!
10.Change your underwear everyday. Thats an order!
11. If you start something then finish it . Your dad is great at this.
12.Work hard and play hard. Don't forget to play hard Marley. Don't ever focus so hard on your future that it makes you ill or forget to be happy. If its doing that consistently then its not the right dream.
13. Whilst playing hard remember that nothing positive ever comes out of a drink which ends in “bomb”
14. Always be on time....never be late! Being on time shows that you respect a commitment.
15.Your not as cool as you think you are. Your going to go through some pretty awful fashion trends. I'm going to tell you that you look perfect whatever you wear and dad is going to laugh. Try and think it through first and work it out yourself because when you are forced to look back at those teen photos they will stay etched in your mind forever!
16. Never settle. Find your passion and see it through even if it's hard. If you want advice on this talk to your dad. He didn't settle until he had what he wanted and he succeeded. He is still striving for more everyday and I couldn't be prouder to call him my husband.
17. Don't ever think you are above anyone who is less fortunate than you. You don't know their story and they may have dreams far bigger than yours.
18. Choose a women that wants to make a home and a family with you. It might seem boring in your late teens or twenties but believe me you will never have more enjoyment and fulfilment than you will in those years.
19. When you do find the women (or man) you want to spend the rest of your life with treat her with respect and care. Tell her you love her everyday. A women who respects herself will be your biggest fan but she wont tolerate being mistreated and sometimes the right ones don't come by twice.
I think the above points cover it all for now although I'm sure you will learn many more lessons along the way. You are already such a bright and happy little boy I have no doubt that you will make us proud. But when all is said and done no matter what you do you will always have our love Marley. That's the one thing in life you will never have to question.
Be the man I know you can be.
All my love