Happy Birthday Jon

Dear Jonathan,

Happy birthday today.  I chuckle when I think about the fact that it has been nine years since you arrived.  We had no idea if you were going to be a boy or a girl.  Had you been a girl, you would have been named Jonna.  We didn't ever call you that, but we did call you JonJon for a long time.  You were easy from the start.  I carried you without as much as a challenge...no extra weight gain, no extra ultrasounds, or morning sickness.  You were along for the ride, and made it quite easy on me.  Thank you.  :)  Your due date came and went, and although I was anxious, I wasn't uncomfortable, so we waited.  The 18th...nothing.  The 19th...nothing.  Your dad and I walked down the street to have a cup of coffee at Village Inn, and he patted you beneath my belly and simply told you that it was ok to come now.  We went home and went to bed, and you must have listened, because at around 3 in the morning, we thought you were hinting about being ready.  Things subsided and we slept for a couple of more hours before waking your brothers and taking them to daycare.  (I was scheduled to work on that Tuesday, so it was rather convenient.)  I remember dropping them off and telling one of the teachers that I was in labor, and at that point, yes I was!  We piddled a little, I called work to let them know I wasn't coming and then we went to the hospital and said, "we're ready to have this baby".  That's about all it took...I think you arrived within the hour!  Again...a piece of cake. 

You were the smallest one of the three of you boys.  I kind of felt like I knew what I was doing since you had two brothers already, so I remember just looking at you, excited about what was ahead rather than anxious and nervous.  We left the hospital on Thanksgiving morning...we had much to be thankful for!  We were so excited for your family to meet you, we took you to our big family Thanksgiving gathering, and you were the main feature. 

Jonathan Leo...your name was influenced by your Grandpa A--John and your Great Grandpas Leo and Leonard.  Jonathan:  Gift of God or God has given.  Leo:  Lion.

See that red on your face...you still get that everytime you eat sweets!

I'm sure I've probably told you that story over and over.  I will continue to do so for a long long time!  Your ninth year has been full from the last month of 2009 until now.  You've always been kind of quiet, but you've certainly stepped comfortably into your skin.  As number three, you've tagged along with your big brothers and while you still do, you've got an individual role all your own.  You are witty, with a dry sense of humor.  It must be an attractive quality, because you've got many friends.  Of course, you're just easy to be friends with...and you've got many, many traits that make you a wonderful person!  You're compassionate, funny, diligent, and you're definitely loyal.  When it is your turn to do something just for you, you always want to include your siblings.  You used to take naps with me, even in kindergarten, just so we could snuggle.  You were my right-hand-man! 

And to your sister Amelia?  You're her surrogate mother...your words, not mine!  You take very good care of her!

You're always up for a challenge...especially if it is a puzzle of some sort!  I've always loved to watch you at work building puzzles!  You've said since you were little that you are going to be the Pope someday.  I will be so proud...whether you're the Pope or simply a pauper!  You are bright and brilliant and have a wonderful desire to love God. 

                                                          Nine years old today! 

                                               Just looking at them makes me laugh! 
I love you Jonathan.  These nine years have gone by so quickly...I am looking forward to the next nine...and the next and next and next!  I love the boy that you are and am confident that I will love and admire the man that you will become!  Happy birthday!