Monday, January 09, 2017

Epistle: To Yoni, on the Occasion of Your Eleventh Birthday

Dear Yoni,

It’s been a while since I’ve written you a birthday letter, because I suck. Sorry.

You make your own magic.
Before I had a lot of kids, I kind of thought that in families with a lot of kids, kids basically got ignored. I figured that parents just stopped making an effort or something, after a while. I don’t know. Then I had a bunch of kids, and I realized that love is not a pie that you cut pieces from. Rather, love is like.. well, not like a pie. More like Twitter. It expands to fill the space you allow it. The more you give, the more you have.

You were born into a house of chaos, and you were forced to live much of your babyhood in the very large shadow of your older brother. You were born to parents who had their world upended, to a mother who frankly did not cope for many, many months. And yet, you managed to thrive.

Perhaps we need to work on your selfie skills.
You have always been wiser than your years, and often wiser than your peers. You are a leader. You speak up. You find your way and make do with what you have. You are in the sometimes awkward position of having an older brother with special needs, but you have almost always deferred to him with grace. You know when he needs help, and how to give that help without embarrassing him. You know that he doesn’t always understand, so you have to be more understanding. You are a marvel.

I find you in trees more often than I would like. 
You also have a younger brother. Frequently, you two are so close that I cannot tell where one of you ends and the other begins. Frequently, you cannot stand each other. But we have more of the former than the latter, and for that, I am grateful.

I could eat you.
Recently, your teacher asked your father if we were sure that you had friends, because you often spend recess playing alone on your DS. We assured your teacher that there are many boys your age to whom we are not related by blood or marriage who are in our home at all hours, and just as often, you are off around the neighborhood with them or at their homes.

You are an excellent student. You somehow manage to complete all your homework at school. You read constantly, although you also spend a LOT of time playing weird games on your sim-less iPhone. You spend a WHOLE LOT of time campaigning for a phone with a sim. Sorry, cookie. Two more years.

I still don’t understand that I child I birthed could hate chocolate the way you do. It makes no sense to me, but it is one of the things that makes you Yoni.

Vanilla. This makes no sense to me. 
I love you so much, and I am constantly in awe of all the wonderful things you do and say.


You are awesome, Yoni.



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