well, it's my due date. a date i obsessed over, counted down to, made a flipping' paper chain out of three different hues of blue construction paper that i dug out of the trash at the elementary school and stapled together while waiting for your three older siblings to get home from school one afternoon, which i then hung in my bedroom and religiously ripped one link off every morning and as it got smaller i insisted that ryan look upon it and remark that indeed, miriam, it was so small. this baby could be here any day.
and now, baby nathan, on the day that meant more to me than christmas, or my 12th anniversary, i hold you in my arms and watch you get totally lost on your way to breakfast. dear child, the nipple is always in the same place. it does not move. stop looking for it in all the wrong places. merely turn your head AND THERE IT IS.
since you're new here, i've got a few things to tell you:
one: this house is loud. you're going to get touched a lot. i hope you're not afraid of heights because i like to store my babies on the dining room table while they're still small enough not to fall off. it's the safest place for you; you're less likely to get run over there (or not likely at all, now that i think about it).
two: you are loved. yes, you have four older siblings who are just wild about you, and a mom and a dad that think you're the best thing they've ever seen but guess what? you've got a lot more family than just us six. and a lot of friends, too. i realized this when all the love began to pour in when you were born. my friend kimberlea bought you preemie clothes because she knew you were so tiny, and rebecca escaped her family to come sit on that most uncomfortable hospital couch and hold you one evening. big nathan and carrie, avery and jane brought you chocolate and twinkies in the hospital and then they let us use their dryer because our broke when you were only a few days old. dinners have been pouring in, and breakfasts, and grandmas and aunts and uncles.
three: we like sleep in this family. and it would behoove you to like sleep, too. (that sounded like a thinly veiled mobster-esque threat. and it might just be. "that's an awfully nice pacifier you have there...be a shame if anything happened to it.")
four: there are saturday chores. obviously not for you for awhile, but just be forewarned.
and, five: these are your letters. it's like the closest thing i come to scrapbooking, i just write a monthly update on how you're doing, but i address it to you in the hopes that you'll find it valuable or interesting or at least amusing. i can only promise to do this for the first year of your life. sorry if you wanted more.
here's how you spent your first two weeks: after you got out of the hospital on day 4 you have spent the majority of your time sleeping. and eating. and pooping. seriously. the poop is out of control. i have used way more diapers than i ever remember using and washed more clothes than i ever remember washing. question: how did i forget so much about the newborn stage? you're my fifth baby for pete's sake!
you've hung out with grandma kristine a lot, and aunt shannon came for a few days, too. every time your siblings leave for school or come home they immediately run to greet you, and then run and wash their hands to hold you. you barely hit the ground, baby (but when you do it's in a super sleek mamaroo that i found on craigslist). and you did make your first public appearance at the local park--your first stroller ride, too. seth was very concerned about you and asked constantly if we'd packed everything we needed.
nathan, you are a pretty sweet newborn. you don't cry very often, you have a very calm personality. you spend your waking hours calm and quiet, taking in the world with your dark eyes. your forehead creases when you raise your eyebrows, making you look observant and wise. you sleep a lot, often very well at night. we are amused by your noises-- you are a very noisy baby, grunting and humming and squeaking. it stops the surrounding conversation and we all listen to you with smiles on our faces.
we love you, baby nathan. you complete this family that we didn't even know was incomplete until you came along. we can't imagine life without you, our sweet and solid number 5. hooray for you!