WAJO and Me / by Susie Lubell

Idan and Roger forever

Idan and Roger forever

Hello magical boy.

It's your birthday! You are six! On the sixth day of the sixth month! That means today is your magic birthday.  And it also means that after months and months of waiting and asking and reminding and waiting more and more asking and more reminding, you are the proud caregiver for a pet hamster named Roger. Who you named sixth months ago. Obviously pronounced WAJO. Finally! And I can think of no better human to take care of a little fluffy creature than you, my dear boy, because you yourself were born a little fluffy creature, with your angora ginger hair and your giganto eyeballs. So I know you will give WAJO all of your love and attention for at least a whole week before I have to take care of the rascal myself. Oh well. 

Beautiful boy, this has been an incredible year for you. You are learning and growing so much. You learned to swim and ride your bike. You learned to write your name and do a cartwheel. You learned to cheat in card games. You learned all the words to several Sia songs, thanks to your sister. 

And next year you start primary school. FIRST GRADE! I can hardly believe it. Wasn't it just yesterday that you were smearing humus in your hair and climbing into the dishwasher? Now you run around with all the big kids and make sure your opinions and thoughts are known. In depth. Ad nauseum. The truth is, even if your siblings are tired of your lengthy explanations about every single thing that occurs to you, I am always quite interested. So you just blabber on. I love it. 

You know what else I love? I love all your fwends. Yuval and Ariel and Eviyatar and Neta and Naama and Eytan. I love watching you guys build forts and make obstacle courses and slide down the stairs on sofa cushions and swing in our hammock together arguing about who's a better Ninja Turtle, Donatello or Michaelangelo. I love that you wear the same super short cut off jeans every day with your fake Blundstones, looking like the sun-kissed Israeli kiddo that you are. I love that you can roll your resh like an Israeli ambassador but you can't pronounce an R to save your life. I love that you want to be an artist like mommy and that you have the patience to sit and learn with me. I love that your favorite color is yellow. I love that you call my flabby belly and under arms your "fluffa" and how your rub your whole face right in there and inhale its magnificence. I love your laugh and how easily it comes. I love how you insist we read you a book every night. And how you love the old Syd Hoff books. I love how you're big and little. 

I wish for you another wonderful year full of hamster cuddles. I wish you an easy transition to big kids school. You're lucky to have a fifth grader as your sister. She'll watch out for you. I wish for your imagination to stay infinite. I wish you continued delight from all the things, large and small. I hope you continue to try new things. To eat. Wouldn't kill you, you know? 

I love you mieces to pieces. 
Your mommy