Thursday, August 03, 2006

The Rocking Chair

Here it is, dear readers--the sappy first birthday post. Below is Isaac's birthday letter, which will be placed in his baby book.

One day our family will move out of this brick house on Nebling Road(*) and our family will make a home somewhere else. We will all by excited by this change of residence and the promise (and hopefully closet space) it will bring. Just like most people, I will be sad to one day leave this house, which was the first house your father and I bought together and the first house you called “home.” When that day comes for us to move on, the thing that will make me saddest is to see the empty space and the well-worn grooves of where your rocking chair sat in our living room.
You and I have spent many an hour rocking away in that chair this first year of your life. From those early days of your precious existence to those first few months of crying jags around 6pm every night when I would prop my legs up on the ottoman with you stretched from my knees to my waist and we would rock away those tears. We have rocked in that chair before every nap and every bedtime, singing the classic “Time for Night-Night”. Your tiny little body that used to fit quite snug in the crook of my arm now stretches out across my lap, with your sweet feet propped on the table next to the chair. Now you can suck a bottle down in about a minute, rather than the 30 minute long feeding sessions we used to have in that chair. You found your love for books in that rocking chair, starting with “Busy Baby” which I read to you countless times each day for months on end. You have expanded your literary tastes to include the likes of “Farm,” “Peek-A-Zoo,” “Where is Baby’s Belly Button,” and the classic “Pat the Bunny.” We have logged many miles on that rocking chair this first year.
This morning of your first birthday you still sleep peacefully in your crib, likely clutching Giraffe and Blankie to your face. When you were born, Daddy and I loved you instantly but I remember thinking, “What am I going to do with this baby?” Three weeks later, I had to go to a doctor’s appointment and had to take you with me. This was our first outing by ourselves and I was a ball of nerves before we left the house. However, I realized that I could take a precious baby with me and not manage to lose or drop you while out. That day we went to Target after visiting with the doctor and I remember looking down at you while you slept in your infant carrier in the bright red shopping cart and thinking, “We are a team now.” Since that day, you and I have explored and ventured out to many places during our days together. I have watched you go from the sleepy infant who often dozed in his car seat to an active little boy who insists on telling everyone “Hi” as we pass them.
The world continued to swirl around us during this first year of your life. As you were learning the basics of smiling, rolling over, and developing a love for pears; society marched on. You were born at a time of war, in which our country continued to fight for a cause that most Americans are beginning to deem worthless (don’t get your father started on this one). Gas prices soared to all-time highs and then dropped (paid $2.87 / gallon yesterday and that was cheap), only to soar again. Hurricane Katrina hit Louisiana and Mississippi weeks after you were born and we sat glued to CNN during those middle-of-the-night feedings as we watched New Orleans fall apart. In these final days of your first year, the world has held its breath waiting to see if the transition of power in Cuba will finally create a better life for its residents.
This first year of your life, our family also said good-bye to a loved and cherished member. Your great-grandfather Leon passed away five days after Thanksgiving. Oh how he loved you during those first months of your life! He was the first to witness you roll from your stomach to your back and got the biggest kick out of every sweet thing you did. Pawpaw would carry pictures of you down to the cafeteria (he and Grandmother lived in a retirement community) to share with their friends at each meal. His favorite was one of you in your yellow giraffe pajamas, sitting in your bouncy seat, holding a book. Pawpaw would say, “Have I shown you the picture of my grandson who can read?” That picture was quite stained and well-worn from passing it around the dinner table so often. Wouldn’t Pawpaw get the biggest kick out of seeing you now, with your red basket of books, pouring over each page so intently? I am sad that you won’t know Pawpaw the way the rest of us did, but I am so thankful for those first few months when the two of you did get to spend time together.
What a year it has been, sweet Baby Isaac Michael. Your father and I often talk about you once you are off to sleep and cannot get over the fact of how very much we love you. We already see traits of your personality shining through—from an intense curiosity to a quite obvious independent streak. We get amused with how quickly you can eat an entire fruit cup and how anxious you become once you see me pull that yellow cup out of the pantry. Daddy loves how you race to the back door the moment you hear the garage door open, eagerly awaiting his arrival home after a long day at work. You then flash him your biggest grin and are off to play again. Daddy and I had a pretty good life before you joined the family, yet somehow our life is immeasurably better than it was before.
Happy First Birthday, Tiny Tiger! I cannot wait to see what this next year of life holds for you and spend even more time in our beloved rocking chair.

Love Always,
Mommy and Daddy

(*) Actual street name changed to protect the innocent.


Phillips' Family said...

Seriously--WHY does Blogger hate me? I have no clue as to why there is a large amount of space before my post and why the formatting is off.

Kelli said...

What a precious letter. Matthew and I talk frequently about his green room that he had when he came home from the hospital in our first house. Isaac is a lucky boy!

Kara Alexander said...

What a great idea to commemorate the historical events of Isaac's first year. I always wanted to know what was going on when I was born and how my parents lived in the midst of it all. He will treasure these letters. Very sweet. Happy Birthday, Issac.

Karen and Shane said...

So sweet. I need to be more sentimental and write Bella letters on my blog

Ashley Nelson said...

Happy Birthday! What a precious letter. What a blessing to write it for him.

K Speck said...

What a sweet, sweet post....I sure did shed a tear sitting here in my office this Friday morning! When he is older he will TREASURE that so very much.

1literatimommy said...

love that letter; it is so sweet and captures the first few months with your first born so accurately.

kate m. said...

Happy (late) Birthday, Isaac! I was going to wish Isaac a happy birthday on his actual birthday, but our computer was down for a couple of days.

Your letter to Isaac was so very sweet!

Amy C said...

That is such a sweet letter! I wish I was that patient to sit down for long enough to finish a thought. Beautiful!