January 29, birthday of Oprah Winfrey and SIMON ELLIS! I am hereby invoking by mommy blogger credentials to do a tribute to my sweet little baby boy. Here's a year in review of pictures of Simon, starting with December 2011.
And no mommy blog is complete without the obligatory letter to the baby on the occasion of the baby's birthday-- lawyers write briefs and mommies write letters to their babies. It's what we call an industry standard. So, without further ado, here's my letter to Simon (and the rest of the planet) on his 1st birthday.
As discussed directly above, your mom can't resist the opportunity to memorialize her deepest thoughts about her relationship with you in the pages of her blog. If you are reading this, that means that the Internet is still around and you have learned to read, so someone is doing something right.
Let's just be clear: I am going to use every cliche I know during this missive, but the fact that I may be unable to make up new ways of saying something mothers across the ages have felt does not make you (or me) any less special.
I can't believe it's been a year. Holy crap. That snow storm. Did I ever officially thank you for coming BEFORE the blizzard of 2011? If not, thank you. It would have sucked to have to rush through a C-section to get home before the highways got buried under snow. We got our time in the hospital with Daddy and then we got to go home early to settle in before the Snomaggedon.
It's not an understatement to say that you changed everything. Sadie did a good job of stabbing the status quo in the heart and eating it for breakfast, but you gave that "new normal" a fatal kick. To you, our former pre-Simon lives were just a pinata waiting for your piercing blow to smash it all into something new. And you did. With your smile and your gentleness and your occasionally stuffy nose and endless ability to cuddle-- you changed it all.
For the better.
Most importantly, you slowed me down. You gave me a great reason to stop spending my days doing something that didn't fit anymore with my vision of my family or my vision of myself. It takes courage to stop doing something like working, but when you came along, it wasn't a matter of courage at all. You made it pretty simple, especially that trick you do where you don't sleep much during the night so that I am tired and can't think straight and know that I could not properly dispense legal advice while nursing and staying up all night. That part was clever and extremely effective.
You fit right in. Months ago Dad said you have a quiet confidence, which is true. You are ours and we are yours. There's no doubt about that. You are also secure in your masculinity and haven't balked once when I put you in pink chairs or pink jumpers. You quiet self-assurance says, "I don't give a shit what color this jumper is; I am here for the fun and the fellowship. Now, get me a snack and sing me a song. Please."
I never have seen anyone smile as much as you do. I love to catch your eye when you are across the room busily hunting down balls to throw down the stairs. You always stop to smile back at me and then get back to what you are doing. You're a little guy who has time to smile and can get your focus back to whatever it was you were doing. I am pretty sure you get that from your dad.
And oh your lovely, perfect, luscious chins. There is NOTHING on Earth I love as much as I love them. I love it that your face is so soft and cuddly and that you let me kiss your cheeks all day long. You smell really great, but, frankly, it's not that milky, sweet newborn smell. It's more like applesauce and gravy from your babyfood jars. I love it because it smells like you and only you.
I love the way you play in Sadie's chair by scrambling up and down it all the time. I love the fantastic mood you are in everynight after dinner. You just smile and walk around looking to spread a little Simon Sunshine to everyone around you. I also love it that you want me to hold you from your nap until dinner, even though it makes chopping a challenge. I love the way you look at your sister and light up when I tell you we are going into her room. When you and Sadie are playing in her bed it seems like you have no idea you are little as you follow her moves step for step. I love how you yelp in agony when Sadie body slams into you. I love how much you love the bath even though you almost always slip and fall somewhere in the process and end up in tears.
I love that you are my second child and so different from Sadie. I love that having children, for me, means getting to heal some old wounds associated with birth order and ungrieved losses from way, way back. I love that we are still nursing and that you will probably tire of it before I do. I love that even when you have missed a nap and can hardly hold your eyes open, you still smile at me.
I love your babbling and conversations. I love it when you wake me up talking and I can hear you merrily chirping away in your crib before I open my eyes. I hope I never forget the funny "words" you say and how much emphasis and passion you put into some of your exclamations. I can't understand you, but boy, I wish I could. I love that you don't care if your diaper is dirty no matter how stinky your poops are. I find it amusing that you refuse to have your diaper changed without substantial resistance.
I love that you remind me of Spanky from the Lil Rascals. I love that you remind me of me and Jeff at the same time. I love what a force for healing and joy and change and transformation you are and you have never said I word I comprehend.
It's crazy, really.
Thanks for coming our way. You are a blessing, a treasure, and a beloved little spirit.