Wednesday, September 11, 2013

Happy Birthday, Jay!

Dear Jay,

Happy 5th Birthday!  Every year when I sit down to write these birthday letters, I look back at last year's birthday letter to remind myself of the starting point for this letter.  And every year, I am blown away by how much you have changed in 365 days.

September 2012

September 2013

You are such a kind, sweet boy...with just a hint of major destroyer mixed in.  You love to create and you love to destroy.  I will often see you crushing dead leaves in your hands as we walk to pick up Andrew.  You love to knock over towers of blocks.  But, at the same time you love to build intricate towers of blocks.  You're not all destruction.  You're quite creative and thoughtful.  Perhaps, this stems from your obsession over the past year with Angry Birds!

You will stage elaborate levels with your blocks, legos, cups, small blocks, well pretty much anything you can get your hands on.  You love to play Angry Birds on the ipad too (obviously!).  You have surpassed my capabilities with the game.  It is such an interesting glimpse into your mind to watch you strategize your moves.  You clearly have a terrific grasp of spacial relations, as well as, causation.

Your love of video games is not limited to Angry Birds.  And you seem to live your life like it's a video game.  Often you would tell me to "pause" whatever we were doing, while you ran off to use the bathroom or get another piece of a puzzle, or get a drink.  You would tell me to "press this button to see a video".  Or maybe "Let's restart this level", when you wanted to retry the activity/ game we were playing together.  Or maybe saying, "Good job, Mom, you completed round 2!"  I can seriously see you becoming a developer of video games and apps in the future.  Assuming, those things still exist 20 years from now!

June 2013

This past year saw you beginning preschool.  You attended school three mornings per week in the Frog class.  This was the same class and school that Andrew had attended the previous year.  I think it was a great opportunity for you to be on your own and be recognized for yourself.  It was your first opportunity to step out of Andrew's shadow, if only a teeny tiny bit.  You were the youngest member of your class and you did really well.  You made new friends, learned new songs and seemed to really enjoy your time there.  I loved watching you walk to the car with your backpack on and a smile on your face, eager to show me your artwork or tell me about your day.  It wasn't always smiles, however.  You would often get disappointed that we needed to go pick up Andrew at school.  I think you really minded that our Mommy/ Jay time was dwindling.  In a somewhat ironic twist, you and I are getting to spend all of our time together this year!  In March, your father and I decided to send you to the Dino class this year and have you start kindergarten next year.  In May, I was offered a job to be a teacher at your preschool.  In August, it worked out that I would be a teacher in your Dino class.  So, now we get to spend all day, every day, together.  And I've come to appreciate what a blessing this is for me!
I get to see you flourishing at preschool.  I get to watch you make good decisions and learn from bad decisions you make at school as you interact with your classmates.  I get to see you present your special item at Chapel time instead of hearing your teacher tell me about it.  And bottom line, I get to be with you!  I love spending time with you.  This year of 24/7 Mommy/Jay time is really hitting me over the head that next year both my boys will be off to school all day and I won't be with them.  I'm glad for this and for you.  But, for now, I'm counting my blessings that things worked out the way they did.  I am trying to savor this last year of being a mother of a preschooler!

You are growing up so much physically too.  You no longer need to stand on a stool to brush your teeth in the bathroom.  You can help yourself to water out of the refrigerator door.  You buckle yourself in your car seat.  You learned how to swim this summer during minihawks and the many hours we spent at our pool. You are playing soccer this fall on a team for the first time.  (You are so cute in your uniform, shinguards and cleats.)

 July 2013                                                          September 2013

I love you, Jay...more and more every day.



Today is a day when you hear lots of people remembering where they were 12 years ago.  I, however, find I can't stop thinking about where I was 5 years ago today.  Holding my newborn son in my arms for the first time. 

 September 11th was my due date.  And throughout my pregnancy, I would have moments when I would think "I really hope this child comes before or after their due date".   And every time someone would ask me when I was due, and I would say September 11th (I know I could have lied and said any other date but, I don't lie, at least not convincingly) they would wrinkle their nose or give me a sympathetic look.  As if being born on September 11th was going to be terrible.  But, seeing as not all babies come on their due dates, I decided not to worry too much about it.

Then, September 11, 2008 came and Jay woke me up at 12:45am with contractions.  He was going to be born on his due date.  And it never crossed my mind in the wee hours of that morning, that I didn't want this to happen.

Today is a day of memorial and a day of remembrance of a tragic day in our national history, but it's also my son's birthday.  And I love that forever on, that will be what I think of first on this date.