A year and a half ago, Jonathan Michael was born. The moment I laid eyes on him for the first time, it was instant love. Labor was already forgotten and all I could think about was the unbelievability that the baby I had been carrying for 39 weeks was finally in my arms. And that we had a son. The living, breathing result of the love between Stephen and I. A little person who is half me and half the man I love.
Yet here we are, a fast and furious year and a half later, and Jonathan is such a joy. I still can’t believe how quickly my sweet newborn has transformed into a walking, talking, running, belly-laughing little man. A boy who loves his daddy so fiercely that he asks about him literally all day that Stephen is working. A boy who amazes me daily with his increased vocabulary. A boy who definitely has a mischievous streak in him. My little explorer. My little engineer. My little sweetheart.
Though he is definitely starting to test boundaries, he is still such a sweet boy with a compassionate heart. When he reads his Curious George book and George loses the baby bunny and is sad, he ALWAYS kisses George on that page. He isn’t much of a cuddler, but when he decides he wants to sit on me or give kisses, it’s the sweetest thing ever. Sophie, my in-laws’ yorkiepoo, may not agree. She is less than enthusiastic about the hugs and kisses he wants to give her, but he loves big. And that is definitely something I adore about my boy.
Jonathan can say a lot of words, and he definitely has an opinion about everything. I probably couldn’t list all of the words he says but here are some: daddy, mama, eye, ear, nose, belly, koala (“wala”), caribou (“car-boo”), roo (kangaroo), hippo, lizard, fish, George, monkey, ribbit, okay (one of the cutest!), what, water, bottle, birdie, horsey, cow (always referred to as moo-cow), car, no (my least favorite), milk, sky, cracker, book, banana (“nana”), apple, hoop, walk and of course, several family names: Nani, Grandpa, Grandma, Matt, D (for Dan), Bekah, JoJo, CD, Ash, Slade, Nana, Mack, “Opie” (Sophie). When he doesn’t have the words yet, he’ll just yell out some random gibberish very vociferously to make sure his point gets across. He can string words together, such as “bunny, are you?” (bunny, where are you). He’s asked where bunny, birdie, Daddy, Nani and George all are. He will also say “I get you.”
He walks, he runs, he tries to jump and dribble. He throws extremely well (though not always the things I would like him to throw). He mows the carpet and hardwood with his toy lawnmower. He plays his toy piano and loves listening to Baby Mozart, Beethoven and Bach. He can “count” to 3 (he knows how to repeat one, two, three, at times while moving objects). He has mastered the stairs by crawling, walking and sliding down. He likes to hand me pots and pans when I’m cooking. He figured out how to unwrap a Hershey’s Kiss on the first try. “The Wheels on the Bus” mesmerizes him. When we put him to bed at night, he says “bye” and blows us kisses (talk about melting your heart).
He does burpees. He does sumo deadlift high pulls with my 5 lb. dumbbells. His squat form is on point. Anything his dad or uncles can do, he thinks he can do, too. All of his own volition. He’s definitely a Rabon.
He has the best baby bed head. He has 12 teeth and his incisors are starting to make their appearances. He has a newfound appreciation for pb&j. He is quite interested in his belly button and will probably show it to you. He is a notorious water bottle thief. He charms people at the grocery store, restaurants, and Target. He high-fives all willing participants. He blows kisses to cars as they drive by.
He is truly a little man. But he’s still my baby. Not a toddler. Baby. (Someone is clearly in denial, a fact for which my husband continually mocks me.)
He’s spent the majority of the last two months surrounded by family at my grandparents surprise 80th birthday party, followed by my grandparents visiting, followed by my parents visiting, followed by Stephen’s parents visiting. He’s loved every moment. Family is so important, so I am truly thankful that he has been spoiled both by the attention but also by the quality time. These are the moments he may not remember but will be indelibly etched into the fiber of his being and into the memories of those who love him.
Eighteen months in and so much life has already been lived, with so much yet to come. I feel remarkably blessed to get to be Jonathan’s mom and help guide him into the man he will become, starting with these earliest days of his life. So much of who he is and who he will become is being formed each and every day. What a mind-blowing realization that no day, not one, is insignificant. Not one day is ordinary. Not one day doesn’t hold a deeper purpose in the course of his life. What an honor and a blessing it is to spend these days with him.