Today, you boys are 19 months old.  Over a year and a half ago was when I first met you.  You were so small then.  Fragile.  Your life and what you would become were uncertain.  You had to fight.  For every breath, every nap, every cuddle.  Nothing came easy to you, and it still doesn't.  But that's ok.  Sometimes life is a challenge.  It may seem unfair, but this often complicated aspect of your lives is what will shape you.  What has shaped you.  When I think of you boys, one word comes to mind.  Hero.  You are my heros.  And this is something that is reinforced daily when I see you making progress.  Progress that at times seemed unreachable. 

Aiden - today you are walking.  Crawling is still your preferred mode of trasportation.  But you can walk.  You've taken up to 30 steps at a time, and you're so proud when you do it.  You know that you've done something big.  Your speech has exploded since you had your cleft repair in February, and you try to repeat everything you hear.  It doesn't always come out properly, but soon it will.  You say "Hi!" when we walk in the room, and wave bye-bye when we leave.  You sign more, milk, eat, sleep & all done.  You love, love, love to eat and drink out of your sippy cups.  You give hugs and high-fives.  You like to wrestle with your papa.  You snuggle your baby when it's time to go to sleep.  And you can sleep for hours on end.  You are the joy that drives me to move forward each and every day.  I love you to the moon & back.

Ryan - you are such a wise ass.  Haha.  I'm sorry, but that's the first thing that comes to mind.  You are always smirking and have this look in your eyes that tells us you have a secret.  Once you start talking, there is no doubt in my mind that you will be the jokester in the house.  You have great hair.  A contagious belly laugh.  A really loud cry.  And you're so super snuggly.  The day after your brother walked for the first time, you stood.  You stood on your own two feet.  A moment that, for me, solidified your future.  A moment that I didn't expect to happen for months and months down the road.  You sure do know how to surprise us.  You love pretzels, graham crackers, muffins, waffles, bagles...basically anything that is a carbohydrate.  You still keep us up at night, but maybe it's because you crave one-on-one time with us.  You are a fast learner.  You say mama, dada, ball, green, baby, and apple.  When asked, "who's the baby?", you gesture toward yourself and say "me".  You are the light of my life.  The apple of my eye.  All those awesome cliches.  Yea, that's you. 

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