As I sit here writing this note to you I keep thinking of how so very many things change in eleven years.
Where you were once just a baby, so small, relying on us for every need you are now a boy, a pre-teen, someone more than capable of doing it all (but I still love the things you need me to do and the fact that you ask me for help when you need it.)
Just eleven short years ago your day was an alternating pattern of sleeping and eating (well, the eating part you had down, the sleeping, not so much), you now walk and talk and dress yourself and put your own laundry away and unload the dishwasher and build things and so much more.
You make your own lunch, you make friends, you make jokes, you make plans, you make messes (ok, some things don't change that much.)
You have a sister (who adores you.) And I love to hear the two of you laugh and talk when you play together. And even when you don't get along (and there is a distinct lack of laughter) you tend to work things out and play together again like nothing happened.
You are kind and silly and compassionate and serious and fun.
You are an amazing Lego builder (now go put some of them away before I step on them, barefoot.)
Sometimes I walk out into the kitchen in the morning and see you there and I just stop and wonder how it is that you seemingly grew another inch overnight.
I am so proud of how well you are doing in school and how much you love to read.
I love that you still let Dad read to you every night (I know you love this too, but you may never know how much your dad loves this.)
I love to read your "Human Beans" comics and the stories you write.
I love to hear (after we pry it out of you) what you are working on at school, who your friends are, what you did today.
You are my reminder to slow down, to savor the moment, to write it down, to take a photo, to make a memory.
Ben, I love you on today, your birthday, and every day.