Posted by: Matt and Jenna | February 3, 2010

Letter from Mommy – 12 months

I have gone back and forth about whether I should post this or not.  I wrote it the week of Eli’s first birthday but have been hesitant to post it publicly.  Part of me feels that it’s from such an intimate part of my heart that I don’t want to put it out there for the world to read and judge.  But then again, I think this blog is more for Eli than anyone else, and I want these words to be part of his story.  I want him to read these words years down the road and know how deeply his mommy loves him.  So, even though it’s 2 months late, I decided to go with it.  🙂



Wow.  I don’t even know how to communicate exactly how I feel about this big birthday or even close to what I feel for you.  The feelings I have for you and for this FIRST birthday are both overwhelming in very different ways.  It’s 3 am and I can’t sleep because I’m so overwhelmed by the emotion that I know I will feel on Saturday at your party as my heart starts to process what is happening.  I’ve avoided “going there” because every time I’ve tried to get close the tears just come.  Between caring for and playing with you and planning your party I haven’t had the time or emotional endurance to go there.  I actually think that planning a huge, perfect party for you has been my attempt to numb my heart so I don’t have to accept that you’re growing up.  If I can just keep the information in my mind from making its way to my heart then maybe accepting that you aren’t my tiny (ok, you were never tiny!) baby anymore won’t become reality, or at least won’t hurt so bad.  Don’t get me wrong, baby boy.  I’m excited to watch you grow!  I’m thrilled that we’ve come so far over the past year!  It’s just an unexplainable combination of happy and sad that you won’t be able to understand until you become a daddy!

You are such an absolute bundle of joy!  You are teaching me so much about how to share my joy with others, even when I don’t feel like it.  The way you light up with that incredible smile of yours and wave to every single person we pass in the grocery store just melts my heart (and theirs of course!).  You are constantly on the go, running from one thing to the next.  You seem to be so afraid you’re going to miss something.  Some things you currently do… wave to everyone in sight, dance on the tile floor and in the bath tub since your feet make a slapping sound, climb on every piece of furniture in our house, say mama, dada, bye (sounds like buh buh), and hot (ha ha), sign “more” and “all done” (working on please and thank you), give kisses with a big open mouth (mmm), hug Kelsey, toss Kelsey’s toys, roll a ball to us, when we say “wiggle wiggle,” you move your upper body from left to right (so cute!), fight your afternoon naps, and just overall bring so much joy to our lives!

What you eat…
You have 3 solid meals a day with 6 oz. of milk at each and then one 8 oz. night time bottle.  You’ve definitely hit the “picky toddler phase.”  The funny thing is that you don’t reject foods consistently.  You like almost everything at one time or another.  For example, one day you love green peas.  The next day you genuinely gag if I put one near your mouth.  That is the case with most foods.  Although… you will eat just about ANYTHING if we add a touch of BBQ sauce!  This really makes me laugh since your Daddy love BBQ sauce so much!  While it’s extremely frustrating to carefully prepare your food only to have you gag at seeing it half the time, I’m so thankful that you still like those things.  I guess you just have to be in the mood for them?  We aren’t sure.  Some days it seems like you don’t eat a ton of solids, and then the next day you eat two whole tortillas, chopped tomatoes, fajita chicken, onions, squash, and zuccini all in one meal.  It’s amazing!  In the bottle realm, you’ve completely transitioned to whole milk and will take it out of a sippy cup anytime we offer it to you.  You weren’t thrilled with the idea of mixing formula and whole milk, but as soon as we handed you a bottle of straight whole milk, you drank it down in no time.  I guess the transition didn’t have to be as complicated as we were trying to make it.  Way to go buddy!

How you’ve grown…
My how you’ve grown!  At your 12 month well visit, Dr. Graham said that he would have thought he was walking into an 18 month well visit if he didn’t already know you!  You weighed in at 24.5 lbs. (69%) and measured 34 in. long.  For your length, they’ve been telling us that you’re in the 99th percentile since your 2 month visit because you aren’t on the chart!  We have a tough time finding clothes that are long enough for you that don’t swallow you whole.  Hmm–wonder who you get that from?  You wear 18 months in clothes and a size 5 shoe.  You’re growing like a little weed!

How we love you…
This time last year I was having sleepless nights as I sat up waiting for you.  This time last year your daddy and I were praying that you would arrive safely into this world.  This time last year you and I shared the same heartbeat (AMAZING).  You were safe inside my tummy.  I could protect you—keep you from reflux, injections, hard falls, bloody lips, molars, a raw behind 🙂 and all of the other things that have caused your tears over the past year.  Although, as much as you love stretching out and having your own space, I can’t imagine that you were too comfortable in my belly!  Eli, you are such a miracle!  Over the past 12 months you have attained your own heartbeat, your own rhythm (You are my child!), your own personality, your own will, and your own dreams (even if they revolve around getting your hands on a remote or hopping on Kelsey for a ride at this point in time)!  We are so blessed and excited to see how you grow into the person God created you to be over the next year!

. . .


  1. Jenna-
    This was beautiful! I’m so glad you posted it!

  2. So sweet…I know exactly how you feel. Such a mix of emotions…you wish you could hit the pause button but you also love all of the new stuff they do every day. Being a mom really is amazing! I miss you NeNe. Thanks for sharing your sweet heart. Love you!!!

  3. That was beautifully written Jenna! Eli is blessed to have parents that not only love him, but who are also teaching him about the Lord.

    He’s so handsome!

  4. BEAUTIFUL!!! Jenna, you have such a gift with words. It doesn’t seem so long ago that I was writing letters to you. I am so blessed to be your Mother & Eli’s Mia. I love you all!

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