I was just reading through my blog and it occurred to me that I talk a lot about how excited I am about Clarissa joining our family, but I don't mention my boys nearly enough. So here's an entire post dedicated to how crazy in love I am with my sweet boys.
Josh was a happy surprise in our lives. Shawn was going to pharmacy school at the time, I was working to pay the bills and like most college students, we were barely keeping our heads above water. So when I found out that I was pregnant with Josh, it threw us for a loop at first. I was so scared through that pregnancy. I was scared to give birth, scared to be a mom, scared about how we we were going to afford it...that pregnancy was rough. We knew that it was going to change our lives in a big way.
But what we didn't know at the time is that it was going to change our lives in the best way ever. There's just no way to describe the feeling when they put that baby in your arms for the first time. I immediately went from being scared to just being in complete awe. There was this perfect little child, and he didn't care if we didn't have enough money or if I didn't know what I was doing at first.
We named him Joshua Dennis. Joshua, I'm embarrassed to say, after a character on Friends! When I was pregnant and trying to pick a name, I watched an episode of Friends where Rachel was dating someone named Joshua and she kept saying his name over and over with such flair that for some reason it stuck in my head. Joshua. I love that name.
His middle name is my dads name. My dad died of cancer when I was 20. He never got to meet any of his grandkids and I know that he would have loved them so much. My dad would have been such a proud grandpa. So since he couldn't be here in person, I wanted Josh to carry on his name so that he could always be with us in spirit.
Josh has always been a unique kid. Anyone who knows him knows what I'm talking about!! Josh's first word when he was about 9 months old was hi. We would go to the grocery store and he would sit in the cart and wave to everyone and say hi like he was grand marshall of a parade. We would make friends everywhere we went! He's now 8 and that really hasn't changed.
Josh is Mr. Personality. He wants to meet everyone, he loves everyone and everyone is his new best friend. The kid LOVES to talk. He will talk to everyone. We joke that he starts talking to moment he wakes up, he talks all day and he talks in his sleep. You can always learn something new from him and I love it.
Josh is also freakishly smart. When he was two he was obsessed with the alphabet and by three had taught himself to read. People are constantly asking me how I got him to read so early. Honestly, I couldn't have stopped him if I'd wanted to. When he was three he used to take Shawn's huge medical books to bed and look at them before he went to sleep. When he was four he started writing stories. We have a huge binder of all the stories he's written over the years and they're priceless. At six he asked me what an autobiography was and when I told him he went to work writing his. It's currently 22 pages long and he adds to it occasionally.
He's extremely curious about life, he asks a million questions a day, and if I don't know the answer he'll find out himself. He loves computers and he loves to build things. The other day he told me that when he grows up he's going to be an architect during the day and he's going to write books and comics at home. I told him to go for it. He also loves to make movies. He has a digital camera with video capability and he's constantly making movies for us. They're awesome!
Josh is also extremely sensitive and kind. He's incredibly soft hearted. He inherited my love of animals, which is something we like to bond over. He helps me identify the birds in the tree, we've had a good time watching the birds together. Josh and I have so much in common that it's almost freaky. He keeps track of all the things we have in common and he's always excited when he discovers a new one. He's my little buddy and I love it.
Josh is just an amazing kid. We're so lucky to have him in our family. I could go on for weeks about what a truly amazing person he is. I look back and remember how scared I was before he was born and it makes me smile now. I had no idea what a blessing he was going to be.
When Josh was two we decided he needed a sibling and after being surprised that it wasn't as easy to get pregnant the second time around, we were excited when we finally found out that we were pregnant with Matthew.
Matthew had a really scary entry into the world. It's a long story that you probably don't want to hear, but the short version is that the cord prolapsed and I was rushed into emergency surgery. It was horribly scary at the time. There was no time to give me an epidural so I had to be put under completely and Shawn had to wait in the hall. So while I'm sure Matthews birth was as wonderful and miraculous as Josh's, I'll have to take the nurses word for it, because I didn't get to witness it.
What I do remember is waking up an hour later to the nurse telling me that I had a son with blond hair. My first thought in my half asleep state was that she must be talking to someone else. How did we create a blond child??
I don't know, but we did and he was beautiful from the first moment I saw him. Josh was small and felt so fragile when he was born, but not Matthew! He was 8lbs 1oz of solid baby!
We named him Matthew Thomas. To be honest, I don't even remember anymore how Matthew's first name came to be. I think we kicked around several names early in my pregnancy and the second we said Matthew it just instantly became his name. He's just always been Matthew. I can't imagine him being anything else!
Since we used a middle name from my family for Josh we decided to use a name from Shawn's family for Matthew's middle name. We looked through his family history and found Thomas White, Shawn's great-great grandfather who had a really great life story, so we decided to use Thomas as Matthews middle name. And actually, it never occurred to me until later, but Thomas White is actually Clarissa's son! (It's also her husbands name, actually, but we specifically named Matthew after the son.)
Ever since Matthew was born we've called him our little ray of sunshine. Matthew is the most easy going kid ever to walk the Earth. He doesn't care what's going on in life, he's just happy to be along for the ride. He gentle and kind and patient and happy. He's also hysterically funny!
There are so many things I love about Matthew. He's always got a smile on his face and he's always up for whatever is going on around here. He's a good sibling to Josh. Josh likes to take charge of life and whatever is going on in it and Matthew is happy to accommodate. We used to call Matthew The Shadow. Wherever Josh was, Matthew was two steps behind. It still is that way, actually. We've just stopped using the name.
Matthew is much more physical than Josh. Josh doesn't like sports much, but I think Matthew is going to be our athlete. He can kick all our behinds in Wii Fit! He loves to run and be outside and pretend to be a superhero saving the world from the bad guys. He saves us from bad guys many times a day here. Thank goodness for Matthew. :) Matthew is Shawn's Star Wars buddy, and Shawn LOOOVES it. :) They've bonded over light sabers and Luke Skywalker many times.
I know that everyone thinks it about their own kids, but I have really great kids! I'm still in awe of them every single day. They're funny and smart and sweet and I just never knew that I could love anyone so much. They're a blessing to me every single day.
We've talked a lot with them about what it's going to be like to have a new baby in the house and they're so excited about it! They're loving learning about Korea and they're looking forward to their little sister. I have no doubt that they're going to love her to pieces and be wonderful big brothers.
So there you go, everything you ever wanted to know about Josh and Matthew. I am so lucky to be their mom and I can't wait for the day that Clarissa joins us and makes our family complete.