Posts tagged ‘Dear Jacob’

October 5, 2011

Dear Jacob XIII

Dear Jacob,


I just weaned you, and I think you knew it. Tonight you nursed a little longer than you have lately and you let out just one cry a few minutes after I left your room. This was a really tough thing for me to do, even though your daddy and I both believe it’s the right thing for us.


My dear Jacob, a year ago I didn’t know what it meant to love you. That haziness was heavily influenced by extreme sleep deprivation, but the other part of it was simply lack of experience. Now, as I end almost two years of regulating my body to serve you—first while pregnant and then while nursing—I realize in a profound way what it means to be your mom. For your entire existence up until tonight, you have been physically linked to me, and I to you. Tonight the physical piece ends, but what we built in that rocking chair is marked on our hearts. I know it is on mine.


If you heard my voice waver during the third verse of “Amazing Grace” tonight, that’s because I was crying, both for what I’m losing and what I’m gaining. My dad says that the sign of a good manager is when those he or she manages can do the job independently. And that’s what you’re embarking on tonight, my dear, whether or not you know it. You’re not totally on your own, of course—and you never will be—but I think you know what I mean.


Somehow tonight reminded me of the last night of college, when my whole class stayed up all night to watch the sun rise over the parking garage (it’s classier than it sounds). After I went back to my dorm, knowing I’d only get a few hours’ sleep before commencement, I cried for just a few minutes. I knew that my time at school was complete, that I’d done what I’d come to do, and that exciting things lay ahead (like marrying your daddy). But still, something was ending, and it was okay to be sad about that. Oh, Jacob, don’t be surprised by how many hugs you get tomorrow.


Thank goodness for cell phones, email, and most of all, mommy friends who have offered encouragement to me today. These ladies you’ll know as your aunts have made tonight a little easier on me, and for that I am so grateful. I pray you’ll have such dear friends to help you through the tough transitions in your life, too. And you know your daddy and I will always be there for you. We love you so much.


Thank you for being our little boy and for making us into a family. Tonight we are all taking one giant step together, and with faith, hope, and love, I know we are only on to bigger and better things.


Oh, and more soymilk, but some things can’t be helped.


As always, my little boy, I write with all my heart,

October 4, 2011

Dear Jacob XII

Dear Jacob,


Although I recognize that the situation is entirely out of my control, I feel I owe you an apology.


At this point in your life, at least, you have short legs and wide feet. And it’s all my fault.


Your daddy has pretty regular feet, and comes from a long-legged people. I, on the other hand, come from a stock of people your grandma once referred to as “short English people with wide feet who like to eat.” In other words, hobbits.


While I’m delighted with how much you like to eat, the feet thing is kind of a bummer.  Let me tell you now, it’s just easier to shop for shoes online. You may not care about this in the future, but trust me that I’m saving you a headache or two, okay? Also, I hope you like the cuffed look, because all of your pants are too long for you, and I don’t really see that situation changing any time soon. Even my “short” pants are too long for me sometimes. Sigh.


To me, one of the greatest mysteries about you is whether you’ll be a runner, like your dad, a dedicated walker, like me, or somewhere in between. I know you are your own person, and in some (most) ways you may not take after either of us. But if physicality has any role to play in this situation, it looks like you’re taking the longer route wherever you’re going. Again, I’m sorry.


This is not to say that any of this should stop you from going after your dreams. You might need a ladder to reach that high, but I’m happy to hold it steady for you. And in the meantime, your legs, short as they are, work just fine. You can walk, you can sit and stand, and man, oh man, can you dance.


Short, tall, wide, or narrow, I will always love you, little boy. You will forever be my favorite little half-hobbit. Is there a word for that? I just tried to look it up, but the forum was kind of beyond me. I guess we’ll have to study our heritage together, when the time comes.


Until then, I give you all my love,

September 21, 2011

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,

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