Dear Jacob XI (Birthday Edition)

Dear, dear Jacob,

Today is one of the happiest days of my life.

Today you are one year old.

A year ago, your daddy and I were in the hospital, hanging out in a labor and delivery room, letting the induction drugs do their thing and enjoying twenty-four hours of free cable as best we could.  After your due date had come and gone, I finally knew what day would be your birthday.  Before, September twenty-first had just been one of the last days of summer to me.  Now it was a date that was carved into my heart in a very special way.  I hoped I wouldn’t forget it when people asked in the future.  And honestly, I did have to think about it for the first few months.  I didn’t want to get it wrong!

 

 

At 7:36pm, you were born.  I pushed for a very short time, but don’t think that means you get off easy in any way.  I still carried you all the way through the hottest summer in New York City history.  I will remind you of this if and when you sass me as a teenager.

The first thing I thought when I looked at you was, “Wow, he definitely looks like a Schlegel”—your uncle Joseph in particular.  The pediatrician on call validated this for me by giving you your first compliment: “nice mouth.”  You really did seem to have your uncle’s mouth.

Despite having just borne you, I couldn’t believe you were mine.  Yes, I held you, and we took the just-born photos, but I was in disbelief for weeks, months.  Was God sure I was the right one to take care of you?  Could I be everything you needed?  Was I really ready for this?  Would I ever be?

 

The answers, I know now, are yes, yes, yes, and yes.  God gave you to me and me to you, and I trust that He knew what He was doing.  Now with a little more mothering under my belt—and proof that I didn’t drop you or break you or fail to teach you how to love (your snuggles are out of this world, thankyouverymuch), I am sure that you are mine.  You love pasta and books and people say you look like me.

But more importantly, infinitely more importantly, you are you.  You are our little Jacob—your own person, with your own heart and your own spirit.  Every day I thank God for you and pray He’ll give me the grace and the strength to be everything you need.

 

 

You are special, Jacob, and you are so, so loved.  You are, and always will be my precious little boy.  I watch you play and my heart bursts.  I watch you eat and my heart bursts.  I watch you laugh and my heart bursts.  I watch you give hugs and kisses and learn new things and—you get the idea.

Thank you for being exactly who you are.  Thank you for sharing your bubbly smiles, your contagious love, and your easy forgiveness when I mess something up.  This first year with you has been the best one ever.  Let’s raise our sippy cups to many more wonderful years to come.

 

I love you, little Jacob.  Happy birthday, my beautiful baby boy.

All my love,
Mom

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