one: letter to jude

September 3, 2010

dear jude,

today is your very first birthday.

one year ago today you made your entrance into our lives.  i remember the first moment that you were there and they lifted you up and put you on my chest, hot and slick and wet and squirmy.  no one cried, your dad and i just looked at you and couldn't believe it....

holy. shit.

because you were here.

and you looked like this:

getting cleaned up

today, you looked like this:


what a year.

you went from barely a little lump of grumpy mush to... a little boy.

these days you confidently cruise around every room holding on to every surface. you're too intimidated to step out on your own, even though i'm convinced you could do it if you tried. but you don't want to, and you will. not. be. forced.  you bounce up and down when you hear music. you slide off the couch legs-first, just like i taught you and stand at the table drinking out of your own cup.


you feed yourself handfuls and fistfuls of foods. anything– you'll eat it. it's the one time you get truly demanding, when it's time to eat. you MUST HAVE FOODS NAO NOM NOM NOM pound pound pound scream. you love eating, just as it should be.  foodies for life, yo.

in between eating bbq chicken quesadillas you drink milks from the milks, and grow big and strong on the perfect food made just for you and you alone.

you have two teeth now, just barely. really one and a half. and you wear shoes! but hate hats.


this is exactly what it is to be one. wild and crazy and so happy
and also kind of... out of control, like an old drunk hobo. strange, but lovely.

you hate to have your diaper changed for some reason and scream and kick and scream– unless we give you a wipe. it's the magic key to diaper compliance. why? i do not know.  you love balls and bears and dogs and blocks.  animal from the muppet show can make you laugh every. time. which makes my heart ache with cuteness.  such small things bring you ultimate joy.


you follow bang around the living room yelling do-do-do-dog-g-g-g and in your eyes she can do no wrong, she's the best and brightest and most exciting best friend you could ever have.

big out there

you're in a twilight world right now; definitely not a baby, not yet a toddler. you cruise but don't walk- you say words but don't talk. i can see how difficult it is for you to have so many desires and not be able to tell us what you want. sorry kid, i think we're going to have to deal with that problem for a while. i do my best to be understanding and work with you when you're flipping out because we're JUST NOT DOING exactly WHAT YOU WANT.

but you're a happy thing, so generally it's not a problem. one year later i'm still stuck on the first word i used to describe you- zen. you take it all in, absorb it in stride, and move on. i love that about you, it grounds me.


so, here we are, one year later. you've grown impossibly big, and i know you will every year after. every day after that first day was one move closer to independence, one tiny step at a time. some days it feels like we'll never get there and some days the time runs through my fingers so fast and i can't make it stop and i want to cry at how it speeds by me.

you've made us a family, and it truly feels like we are an inseparable unit.

oh dear.

you're weird and goofy and have the funniest laugh, like a little old man. heh heh heh you grumble in your very deep dinosaur voice, even funnier when you're overcome with tickles.

on days like today when you seem so very big it's humbling to think about how much you've changed in a single year.  if i ever want to go back to that tiny baby that kicked me in the ribs all i have to do is sneak into your room at night. you sleep on your stomach with your legs curled up underneath you and your ankles crossed, just the same way you did when you were growing inside me. sometimes i touch that spot on my stomach just below my ribs where your heel was always pressing out at me and wonder how you went from in there to so big out here.


nope, not a baby.  maybe a beach hobo?  we'll see.

the very first year of your life has been the very best of mine.



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