Saturday, June 03, 2006

Happy Birthday, Jon

One of my favourite memories of my son Jon's childhood is of him at no more than twelve months of age, standing in diapers in the kitchen, screaming. He picked up a garbage can that was bigger than he was, held it parallel to the floor and heaved it across the room. This was the child I could imagine myself abusing!

Jon was the last. Never mind birth order, Jon could only have been the final child. Luckily the other two (angels) managed to arrive before him because I would never have chanced another after Jon!

I could tell he was a nice little fellow right from the start. I saw his true nature flash across his face when he was two days old. I knew instantly that I liked him as much as I loved him. The problem was learning how to cope with such a high-strung, explosive little person. I started telling people that Jon was a curse my mother had put on me years before: "I hope one day you have one exactly like you!" Jon made me wonder what I could have done to my mother to have earned such punishment.

He was a screamer. I'm telling you, that boy could crack glass. Eventually I decided that he must have had a sleep disorder of some kind. He'd wake screaming, so I'd pick him up. Then he'd struggle to be put down. As soon as I put him down the pitch of his screams would rise and he'd put out his arms to be picked up again. All the while his eyes looked like a frightened animal's.

After a couple of years he gradually calmed down. He was 'difficult' for a few more years, but he's always been the sweetest little guy you could imagine. As I watched him grow I started to realize that perhaps my mother's curse was really a blessing.

My wee boy is twenty years old today. He's grown to six foot three or four and has the magnificent physique of a football player. He's not only stopped screaming, he has become a soft-spoken, thoroughly civilized young man. He's gentle, kind, sweet, thoughtful, intelligent AND good looking. He was worth all the trouble. Happy birthday to my baby!


At 1:11 AM, Anonymous Martha Shade said...

My little brother is 20!!!! It just can't be!

At 2:02 PM, Blogger Maxine said...

Ah! I was going to ask about your third child, as you posted about another son earlier. I wondered if you had three sons or two sons and a daughter.
Now I know!
Happy birthday to Jon, too!

At 7:56 PM, Blogger Susan said...

Martha's a news producer, long out of the house. She started her career in Honolulu (where she went to university), then Los Angeles, New York, and back to Los Angeles.

At 9:06 AM, Blogger Maxine said...

Honolulu must be a fantastic place to go to university (or for any reason).

At 12:46 PM, Blogger Susan said...

She loved it, spent quite a few years there, but there is a so-called 'paradise tax' to living in Hawaii. Even good jobs can be minimum wage there and many people, Martha included, worked multiple jobs. She moved on to L.A. and then accepted a promotion to New York. That was too cold and smelly for her, so she hotfooted it back to L.A. as quickly as she reasonably could (2 long years!)

At 2:00 PM, Blogger Maxine said...

LA doesn't sound bad either, from all the detective novels I read, but personally I have always thought of San Francisco as my spiritual home, in another parallel universe.

At 2:26 PM, Blogger Susan said...

I lived in San Francisco briefly. It was too COLD. The average mean temperature in San Francisco is lower than Vancouver, B.C.'s (therefore, presumably, MUCH lower than Victoria's). The wind was quite severe too. I didn't bother with face cream and the skin on my cheek actually cracked and bled. It's a pretty place though.


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