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// she's only happy in the sun.
Apr 14

letters to phoenix & zavien // 1

my dear sons,

[disclaimer: it baffles me that i have SONS. i’d only just come to terms with having a son. let alone, sons plural. as in two. as in the same number of arms i have. as in there is always one small human that needs my attention. as in, how do parents of 3 or more ACTUALLY do it? they have to be on drugs. right?]

as soon as i think there is an opportunity for a break, a moment of stillness, of not-being-needed-ness, that moment vanishes. it disappears into an abyss of showers that need to be taken, emails that need responding to, and tea that is always lukewarm by the time i actually get to it.

but today i promised myself i would dust off my blog and write. because, quite frankly, i miss it. and when you’re having all.the.feelings you need an outlet.

also, i know that if i don’t write some of this stuff down it will all be a distant, hazy memory. dev and i will look at each other one day and say ‘remember when the kids were small?’ and then we’ll stare blankly at each other, and say ‘not really’ because there is TOO much to remember and all our headspace is going into keeping our children alive, considering that today phix was chewing on a cable that was plugged into the power outlet, and as i ate my lentils, half my meal dropped on zavi’s head which i’m pretty sure is a parenting no-no.

but here you both are. and not a day goes by that i don’t marvel at each of you.

phix, you are now the ripe old age of two. and i’ll be completely honest and admit that you are 90% delightful and 10% atrocious. when you’re in a good mood, you’re the MOST fun to be around. you’re charismatic, joyful, hilarious and kind. you will wrap your arms around me spontaneously and say ‘puh-wowed-ah-du mommy’ (proud of you) and my insides melt. recently, you’ve taken to asking ‘but why?’ so earnestly with your arms and hands outstretched. i try to give you answers, and you follow every one of my responses with yet another wide-eyed ‘but, why?’ and so inevitably, i run out of answers and am forced to scoop you up and tickle you until your giggles fill the air and you beg me to stop.

i want to go back in time and tell the 28 year old me, don’t worry about all these deep wounds and the shattered pieces of your heart, because one day soon you’ll have a little boy whose laughter will heal all of those hurts. you are that little boy, phoenix hugh. and i’m crazy about you.

and then there’s the 10% of the time when you’re a challenging, crazy, unreasonable, little human. otherwise known as ‘being two years old’. in those moments i sometimes (lots of times) struggle. patience has never been my strong suit and when (through gritted teeth) i tell you for the umpteenth time that ‘we don’t throw our food on the ground’ all the deep breaths, and books on parenthood, and shared DNA doesn’t prevent me from wishing i could snap my fingers and be transported to tulum.

you are also brilliant. scarily smart at times. you know precisely how to navigate any technology to do your bidding. if the apple genius bar hired toddlers you’d have a job before you could say ‘retina display’. now that you know all.the.words you have started to string them together and we are constantly amused by how you’ll express yourself. you like making stuff up – knowing that you’re being funny. like when we ask you how your day was, you’ll tell us you went to the beach and built sandcastles. false, but endearing nonetheless. when we ask you where uncle is – and you’ll tell us matter-of-factly that he’s at trader joes shopping for avocados.

you’ve had to deal with a huge transition with the addition of ‘baby brovah’ and i’m so proud of you considering how well you’ve adjusted. you are gentle with zavi and get concerned when he cries. occasionally you’ll ask to hold him and you’ll inspect his feet and kiss his cheeks. one of the things i’m most excited about is the bond that you two will have. i truly hope you will always be the best of friends.

and then there is our second born.

zavien faizi, where do i begin?

you are the most zen baby i’ve ever encountered. you are actually the kind of baby that is really dangerous to have, because you just make me want even more babies. you’re so easy, so calm and basically just “doing everything right”, as mamani puts it. you sleep, eat, coo at us and smile, and then sleep some more. you love hot showers, sleeping on your tummy and extreme coziness. these three things are basically the secret to life, so good job figuring it out so quickly little one.

did i mention that you are a serious SMOOCH? i mean, look at this face. how am i supposed to get anything done when i just want to eat your chewy cheeks. also, grow a neck kid.

you have these incredible dark piercing eyes that seem to read my innermost soul. while your brother turns everything into a drum, you just gaze at us knowingly as if to say “don’t worry about me, i’ll just hang out and observe quietly from the sidelines, while you tend to that NOISY ONE over there”.

in the past couple of weeks you’ve started smiling a lot. but it’s not just a regular smile. it’s like you’ve INVENTED smiling. behold!

and the reality is that even with all the amazing help and support we have, there are days when being a parent is just hard and overwhelming. there are many instances when i envy my carefree, child-free friends who don’t begin every morning with a 5am diaper change, who aren’t wiping oatmeal off the walls and ceiling, who are not surreptitiously pumping breast milk in the office bathroom hoping that their interns aren’t too freaked out. but then i look at you two, at your exquisite faces and your bright eyes, and i know it’s all worth it.

you are, by far, the best things i’ve ever had a part in making, and i get to be your mama. lucky, lucky me.



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