Category Archives: Dear Jonah
Happy birthday! You are three! Yay! We have a nice art party planned for you at the museum next weekend with some of your friends.
This year has been a whirlwind, and the little person you have become is fantastic! You’ve taken to saying things like “I’ve loved you from the first time I saw you” while holding on to my face with your little hands, and calling your Dad and I your “best friends”. Of course, this amazing vocabulary of yours has also led to you telling me that I am NOT your best friend anymore, when you are mad at me. (Ahh… the three year old attitude is something fierce!) It’s pretty incredible that you have figured out that your words mean something and it’s neat to watch you try to maneuver a situation to your liking with the phrases you choose.
The director of your school, Ms. Brenda, has told me that she doesn’t recall seeing such an active imagination in a child as young as you in all her years of working with preschoolers. Wow! But, you don’t like to be bogged down with things like writing your letters. You would rather sing, and play. You remember EVERYTHING. If you encounter something or hear something even one time, you can understand and relate it to things around you. Mom and Dad have to be very careful with the words we use! Watching you “figure things out” is really unbelievable. Sometimes, it takes my breath away.
Over the holidays, you started sleeping in your “big boy bed”, and decided to potty train yourself. Once you get the idea to do something, you stick to it! You are still an all-around happy boy, and you make others around you smile. I find myself missing you when I’m not with you, even if it’s just for short amounts of time. It’s really important to me that you get to keep that deep-seated happiness that you have radiated since you were born. I feel like it’s my job to make sure that other things in your life are straight forward and predictable, so that you can maintain that light that you have.
There’s something I want to tell you: Momma doesn’t always know what she is doing. I will probably never let on, so you might not realize it, but sometimes, I just have to wing it. We are constantly trying to make the absolute BEST decisions and choices we can for you, and to teach you to make some of those choices for yourself, but sometimes, we are just trying to figure it out like you are. We are a pretty good team, your Dad and me. We are usually on the same page, and try to let you have a say in matters. We hope that this will serve you well as you grow up and make you feel empowered in your life.
You really are the best thing that I have ever done, created, received, etc. I can’t believe that I get to help make you into the being that you are becoming. I feel so lucky! So, today, on your third birthday, and my 35th birthday, I want to say thank you. Thanks for being you, and being mine. Thanks. Have a great day, my sweet boy!
Today, you are two and a half years old. You are incredible. Really… and I know that every parent feels that way about their own kid, but really, you are amazing. People in stores stop to tell me how fantastic you are. Your pediatrician keeps telling me how “bright” you are. You make me smile all the time, and you are loved by everyone around you. I want to tell you some things about you at two and a half years old…
- You love music. You like to sing and you know the words to lots of songs. You like listening to The Beatles, and especially like “Hey Jude”.
- Your favorite meal right now is breakfast for dinner. You really like French Toast, and I make it for you with cinnamon bread. You eat it with scrambled eggs, and berries at least twice a week. You also really like “miso soup with foo” which is miso broth, tofu and udon noodles.
- You LOVE to swim… actually, you just really like being wet… in any way, shape or form. At school, when they are watering the plants in the garden, the teachers tell me that you’re running towards the hose, while all the other kids run away. You are getting really good at swimming, and you can swim by yourself, under the water. All of the other parents at swim lessons always ask me how old you are, and when I tell them, they can’t get over how good you are.
- You like Spiderman. A lot. You call him “Far-fan”. You’ve never seen the Spiderman cartoon, or movie, or anything, but Daddy put you in Spiderman shirts when you were little, and now you love it. Today, I got you a big Spiderman, and made you wait until we got home to open it. You proudly, and patiently carried that Spiderman around in the box until we got home. And, when I put you down to go to sleep tonight, you tucked him in under your favorite striped blanket.
- You talk REALLY well… you understand everything we tell you, and we can understand when you answer us back. You remember stuff, too… we can’t ever trick you by distracting you, because you go right back to it a few minutes later.
- You can be super challenging, because you are trying to learn how to assert yourself, and, even when Daddy and I are frustrated with you, we can’t stop talking about how amazing you are, and how much we love you. After we put you down to sleep at night, we often sit up in bed and talk about how incredible you are, and how much we love you. Even thinking about that right now makes my eyes well up with tears of happiness.
- You know your full name, Jonah Jewett, and that you live on “YOUUUUUUU” Street. You know that Momma’s name is Rachel and Daddy’s name is Justin. You get super proud when you tell us, and call us by our first names.
- You are really sweet… you hug, and kiss and love us all the time. You make people smile, and say please and thank you, and say hello to everyone you see. Your smile is infectious.
Jonah – I can’t believe you are two and a half. Time is flying by since you were born, and I want you to know how special you are. You are my favorite boy. You keep us on our toes and we wouldn’t change you for anything. You are kind, smart, and your own amazing little person, and we love you so much.
Yay! You just went pee pee on the potty for the first time! I’m sure this is totally embarassing, but I don’t care.
And, for your later reference, your potty is a snazzy Elmo number right now… he even congratulated you when you went! (Elmo says “HORRAY!” when you “flush”.)
Momma and Dada are so proud of you, big boy!!
Some days just suck and today is one of them. This whole week has kind of been sucky, in fact.
I have had a rough week at work, but you’ve been in a great mood, and sleeping a little bit better, so once I get home, my bad day eases, and I get to play with you and be happy. You’re almost walking now, so sometimes, I come home from work and you and Daddy are outside practicing.
This morning, you just didn’t want me to leave. Sometimes you are a little sad when I have to go in the morning, and other times, you just wave good-bye. But this morning, you were crying, and didn’t want me to let you go. It was terrible. It makes me desperate to find a way to be at home with you. (Which is also hard, becuase you’re going to be in nursery school in a couple of months, so I could only be home with you for a little while.)
Anyway, I guess the moral of the story is that some days just suck, and that’s ok. We’ll get through the sucky days, because we are a family and we love each other.
That’s all… I just wanted to let you know what I was thinking.
Today is your FIRST birthday!
It’s also Momma’s 33rd birthday, but that doesn’t matter right now, because it’s your FIRST birthday! Wow! We made it an entire year! YAY!
Over the past year, I have been keeping track of things that you do that I don’t want to forget. During the first year of your life, these are some of the little things that you do or have done that I love:
- When you were little, teeny tiny, and you would be asleep, usually on Daddy or I, you would smile – like a huge ear-to-ear grin! We know that you couldn’t have been smiling on purpose at that point, so it could have just been gas. But it doesn’t matter, because it was so very sweet! And it would melt our hearts every time.
- You’d get some serious toe jam! Since you were born in the winter, socks were a staple for you, and we’d leave them on for the day to be sure your little tootsies stayed warm. When we would take them off for bath time, you would have a TON of lint in-between your tiny toes. And, it was always the color of the socks you were wearing that day. I don’t know what it was, but for some reason, your little toes like to hold on to that lint! (As the months progressed, you refused to keep your socks on long enough to get the toe jam and I miss it.)
- From the time you were born, you would make these huge yawns, and at the tip top of your yawn, you would make a little coo or a sighing noise. (Note: I have since noticed that I make a noise at the top of all of my yawns, too. I love that we both do that.)
- You started making a “fake cough” very early on. Momma read in some books that it’s normal, and that usually babies do it because they realize that they get a reaction from a certain noise, so they do it when they want to get a reaction. Being the smart boy that you are, that wasn’t enough, and soon you started “fake sneezing”, too! Usually, you would make one or two real sneezes, and when someone would say “bless you!” you’d follow up with a couple of fake sneezes, and then look and smile. There was a very distinct difference in the sound between your real coughs and sneezes, and the fake, attention getting ones.
- You’ve always been very “chatty”. You make all these little noises, and right now, you can have entire conversations with yourself. (Only you know what you’re saying, but Momma and Daddy pretend like we know what you mean.) When you were a new baby, the noises you made sounded just like you were saying “Hi-Yah!” and “Yeah, Yeah, Yeah.” Now, you say “Ah nah!” which means everything. You change the inflection, sometimes it’s a question, “Ah nah?” Other times, you say it very plainly “Ah nah.” To you, it is an answer to everything.
- Your very first “friend” was the ceiling fan. I know that sounds silly, but no matter what room we were in, you would look up and start smiling and laughing at the ceiling fan. It mesmerized you and made you really happy.
- Sometimes, you would get mad at your toys. You’d scowl at them, and try to squeeze them, and then, eventually, when they didn’t do what you want them to, you’d throw them.
- We started calling you Bam Bam when you were a couple of months old. I think it started when you were first eating in your highchair because you would bang as loud as you could on the tray, and it made you really happy. Now, you bang on everything – the table, the toilet, whatever you can reach.
- At about nine months old, you started realizing that Motley, our dog, was very interesting! You learned quickly that Momma would call Motley by tapping her left hand on the bed or the couch or her leg to get Mot to come to her, and most of the time Mot would come. So, you started desperately trying to get Mot to come to you. (It worked sometimes, but since you liked to pull on his beard, he learned to not come to you very often.) You started trying to tap on your leg to get everything you wanted; toys, Alyssa, food. It was awesome that you understood that tapping made something happen.
- You are DESPERATE to get to the blinds behind the couch, the bed, in your room. You want them bad! And when you would reach for the cords (and occasionally when Momma or Daddy would let you reach them) you would make this little “ooooohhhh” noise, like you had gotten something that you knew you weren’t supposed to have. More precisely, it sounded like the noise that the little aliens in the vending machine the movie Toy Story would make when the “Claw” was coming to get them. (Hopefully, by now you’ve seen the movie and that makes more sense.”
What I really want to tell you today, Jonah, is that I love you. I love you so very much. I want you to always know that no matter what is happening in our lives, and no matter where we are, I love you. Daddy loves you. We are a family and that is the most important thing ever. There may be times in your life when you get frustrated with us, or you don’t agree with us, or you think that we’re mean, but everything that we have done for the last year, and will continue to do for the rest of our lives, is because we love you, and that is all that matters. You should know that you can always count on us for anything, and you should never have to worry about being alone, because we will be here for you forever.
When Momma was little, she didn’t always feel like someone would be there forever, so it’s important to me that you know this, always. I will probably tell you way too many times, and at some point, I’ll probably embarrass you in front of your friends, but I don’t care. I want you to know that you are the most important thing in this whole entire world to me. I love you.
Happy birthday, baby! You are amazing!
Some things are just perfect … and you are one of them.
You have been super sick for almost three weeks, and it’s been hard, and sad. But, you got a “bike” for Christmas, and you LOVE it. And because you are such a fantastic boy, even when you’re sick, you’re happy. Dad took this picture two weeks before your first birtday, and we are in awe of it – and you.
I wanted to write you a little note to tell you about Doughboy. Doughboy was your first dog. He was a fantastic dog, but by the time you were born, he was already an old man. He got sick right around the time you were born, but he stuck around to watch you grow up for as long as he could. In October, we had to have Doughboy put to sleep, which was the right choice for him, and a really hard choice for Daddy and I to have to make. We were sad for a long time, but you did a great job of cheering us up. We miss him a lot. He was your pal, too, and I wanted to post this picture so that you’d remember him.
The really hideous, ugly, atrocious truth is that you will very likely need photos like this to remember your Doughboy. With whom you are absolutely fascinated at the moment. You guys have taken to kicking it on the couch like this…and, well, it’s devastatingly cute.
Doughboy (his real name is Dorian, like my middle name [your middle name is Justin, like my first name]) will always hold a very special place in my heart. He and I met each other a long time ago and for awhile there, it was us against the world.
He loves you. You love him. And your ma and I love you both.
Today you are SIX MONTHS OLD. I can’t believe it!
I can’t believe that six months ago, right at this moment, I was sitting at my desk, just as I am now, but I was in labor, and I had no idea. It was my birthday, and I was at work, breathing through what I thought was false labor. I didn’t know how incredibly, drastically different that day was about to be.
Since it’s your half-birthday today, I want to say thank you.
Thank you for being this amazing, bright, funny, full of your own personality boy. Thank you for being half of me and half of your dad, and yet, totally your own little being.
You are so beautiful, and every day, I look at you in awe, and my eyes well up, because I had no idea how much I could love someone else, until I had you. You have changed our lives, and made us love each other more, too.
You are changing right before our eyes and you’re becoming more of a boy and less of a baby every day. And I can’t wait to spend the rest of my life with you and your dad.
Thank you for being born, and proving to me that I am so much stronger than I could have ever imagined. You are my life, sweet boy, and I love you.
It’s just a simple little iphoner, and to be totally honest, I don’t think I was wearing any clothes when I took it, but I love it (this photo), and I love the you pictured.
It was my birthday. My 33rd birthday. I got up and put you in your seat (which I had carried into the bathroom) and jumped into the shower…chances are very very good that I needed one. And badly.
When I came out—fresh and clean and a year older—there you were, looking like this. Creamy white skin. Crescents for eyes. Delighted to see me. In the bathroom.
And whatever the opposite of having one’s heart broken is, that’s what happened to me. And I feel really lucky to have gotten a picture of it.