* When Joseph was born, he came out screaming. It was indicative of what was to follow. I couldn't take him to the grocery store because he would randomly just start yelling about.. who knows what? It was embarrassing. When we went to church, I am positive people were ready to call DCFS because he would do the same thing: just start screaming bloody murder for no apparent reason. Dozens of people would turn around and stare at me to see if I was hurting him. I would try to smile through my embarrassement.
* When Joseph was born, he was such a trooper. With an oxygen mask, tubes up his nose, monitors all over his body and machines constantly beeping at him that his Something-or-Other level was dangerously high/low/worrisome, he sat there takin' it like a man. I remember watching his little chest going up and down, up and down, and being amazed at how he didn't complain.* Joseph just wasn't interested in talking for the longest time. We got really worried and people would ask, "He isn't talking yet?" Then the floodgates opened and he's never stopped.
* Joseph is one of the most generous kids I've known. Yesterday we went to the store to buy some treats for his school class and he insisted that he buy them himself. I told him I'd pay but he wouldn't let me. He spent two months allowance on it and when the teacher gave him the left over treats to bring back home, he said he had a better idea. He wanted his teacher to give the treats to the principal and other teachers at the school. What a kid.
* Don't you dare try to call him "Joey" or "Joe." He particularly hates "Joe" because we told him people call coffee a "cup of Joe." I can still get away with Joe Joe or JJ sometimes, but he will always tell people angrily: "I'm not JOE... I'm Joseph!!"
* Joseph and I are best friends. We argue and fight with each other all the time because Joseph is smart and won't accept simple answers. Especially the answer, "No, Joseph!" Everything has to be explained. Despite that, we laugh together and love to joke and have a good time together. We love to explore and learn new things together. Joseph especially loves science: outer space and human biology are his favorite subjects. ("Mom, why is carbon dioxide bad for your body?" "I don't know.. it just is...I think" "But why Mom? How come only oxygen is good?" "There are plenty of things that are good for your body, but ummm..." "So how come carbon dioxide is so bad?" "Grrrrr....")
* I love Joseph's name. It means "The Lord will increase." After several years of infertility, Joseph was my own little miracle and I felt he was a gift from God. His name suits him perfectly. I also love how international his name is: Yusuf, Guiseppe, Jose, Pepe, Iosef and Che are a few variations. Awesome.
* Happy Birthday this week, JJ. I love you. It may be raining outside, but there is sunshine in my soul.