Wednesday, March 14, 2007


Six years ago today...Jesse George Veasey was born.

I still haven't lost the baby weight. I should get on that.

Happy Birthday my sweet, complicated, mercurial boy. The last six years have been the best of my life. (That's the story we're sticking with--forget about year #1 with the colic and having to put you on top of the dryer to stop the incessant screaming.) You have brought us such joy, and I have fallen in love with your father all over again everyday I see him with you. You hang the moon for your little sister. You are my heart.

This is who you are at the moment.

You are compulsively creative. You are driven to draw, to paint, to sculpt and invent. You are not content with the ordinary--you want to make robots that work, to paint on the walls of our apartment, to make life sized statues. You prefer markers that are either permanent or smell like different foods. You go through reams of paper monthly. While you have trouble sticking with your homework or cleaning up the living room, you can sit at a table for hours drawing one thing after another.

You made a sign that is currently hanging on your bedroom door. It says "Jesse is mad." When you feel slighted, which unfortunately is more often than we'd like, you sit on your bed and scowl. Your emotions swing from intense joy and excitement causing you to hug everyone in the proximity, to anger and disappointment so overwhelming that you wear traces of it like a mantle for days afterwards. We talk a lot about "letting it go." We talk a lot about "choosing happiness." Sometimes we try to penalize you for your anger, other times we try to hug it out of you. We are often lost in the wild forest that is your emotional make up. I see myself in the things you struggle with and pray that your dad's grounded nature will at some point balance things out.

Sometimes you are so generous. You will wake your sister up by covering her faces in kisses and she will reach her arms up to you. You will pick her up from her bed, carry her to the couch and get her a glass of orange juice. You will snuggle in beside her, and your dad and I will find you both with your arms around each other laughing together at SpongeBob. You will call out "Family Hug" and we will all clasp each other tightly and it is always a good day that day. You call Saturdays and Sundays "Mommy Daddy Jesse Annie days." You wait for them each week with almost the same level of excitement you waited for today.

You love people with an intensity that makes you anxious about life. You want to know when people are going to die, if we will ever move, and worry about every change that may occur in your future. You are excited about getting bigger and older because skateboards and freedom have their allure, but you still want to sleep beside me. You have lost two teeth, your hair has grown dark, you are gangly and coltish. You are doing well at karate and can swim and ride a razor. You can read simple words: THE CAT IS ON THE MOP, but grow frustrated with the tricks of language like silent "e's" and blends--and you'll just look at the picture and say "the fat cat is sitting on the rug and he is happy" which at the end of the day is a more interesting story anyway.

You have many friends, and this year you have blessed us by hanging out with kids whose parents we really like as well--and life is fuller and richer as a result. You play with mostly boys, but you like a girl who has long hair and draws complicated pictures. When asked recently, you declared you were going to marry a boy--which by the way, we are totally cool with if that's what's in your future and just ignore the look on Dad's face---but you were more concerned about weather or not you and your future spouse would be allowed to live with us. I said yes--but then, I have also told you you can stay at home for college and the rest of your life. Again, just ignore that look on Dad's face.

Happy Birthday my Jesse Bear. For your sixth birthday you are getting a Hulk boogey board for the beach this summer, some construction toys you have wanted for months, and Nonnee and DeeDad are getting you a conga drum because you still have an uncanny ear and a natural talent that we are doing nothing to nurture. So bang your drum baby--march to your own rhythm. You are so very loved.


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