Saturday, January 18, 2020

Intentional 2020: Luke (wk3)

A lesson I repeatedly learn in life: my plans never pan out exactly as I envision them.

A week of intentionally focusing on our first born! | Reading & Writing Rych, www.jennrych.comI just learned this week that I am a non-specific generator - a detail of human design I somehow overlooked until now. It basically means that those with my type call in the essence of what we want and not the exact specifics. Which makes complete sense looking back. This is true for both physical things and even the spiritual assistance I sometimes ask for. Nothing shows up quite how I thought it would.

This is the case for my week of being Intentional about the son that made me a mom. I had a list of things that I thought would lend itself to focusing on Luke, and what actually happened was a bit different - and yet kind of perfect. As I wrote down my list of things I did to celebrate him, I realized that what actually transpired was better. And that the point, in all of this, is to establish the feeling and the focus, and not so much the practice of the thing. Dogma and I just don't really get along.

So - I chose this week to be Luke's because his birthday fell in the middle of it. I knew that would mean we'd already be focusing on him and it would give me the perfect motivation to highlight all the best parts of him. I'll likely do the same for his brothers this year.

Here's what I (and a little bit we) did to be intentional about our guy this week. 

+ I'm not great at warming up my car in the morning, and we have a 30 second drive to school in the morning which isn't enough time to get it warm. So poor Luke is always shivering the whole way there. I made it a goal to warm up the car for him this week - I only succeeded twice (Monday and Wednesday), but that's 2 less days he froze - haha.

+ We wrote to each other most days this week. I started this notebook with him last year to give him a place to talk to me and ask questions that he might not be comfortable verbalizing, and we hadn't used it in a while. I made my letters encouraging and positive, and asked him to tell me about his day and about things that would make him happy. He loved writing back, finding the notebook on his pillow (where I put it when there's something new to read), and I noticed that I wrote "I love you" A LOT. He doesn't say it a ton in person, but in writing it was constant. 

+ I both started and ended the week with meaningful tributes to him on Instagram. He doesn't have IG account, but I wanted to document my thoughts on him at this age and put the vibration of admiration and love out in the Universe. His story is a bright one, and deserves to be honored!

+ I tried my best to infuse his birthday with special little things. I started by getting 11 packs of Pokemon & Fortnite cards (because he was turning 11) and stuck them in his Birthdaymas tree. When he was little, he was upset about putting Christmas away so we'd put a mini tree up with a party hat topper and called it his Birthdaymas tree since his birthday is right after Christmas. It's a tradition he loves, now, so we've kept it up all these years.

   + I tried to make his birthday lunch special by filling it with celebratory post it notes, a bright happy birthday napkin, special treats, and a bundle of fruit roll ups that he could pass out to his friends.

   + We replaced his broken Nintendo Switch (which he was not expecting!), got him a new game for it, and filled out his gift bag with some of his favorite things that we normally limit - Gatorade, iced tea, Sour Patch kids, gum, etc.

We write notes back and forth to each other to keep the conversation going with our tween.+ The day after his birthday, he had an orchestra concert. We applauded the heck out of him and took him out for ice cream after even though it was a school night and we usually turn down ice cream because it doesn't really agree with him. (Which devastates him, because he LOVES it.) 

+ We told him last year that 10 was the last year for the "big deal" birthday parties and going forward, we'd just have cake with Grandparents and maybe invite a few friends to do something. He asked if we could take his brothers and his two BFFs to a trampoline park, so I arranged it for this weekend.

+ I asked Luke if he would collaborate with me on a blog series and he said yes! I'm not gonna share the details just yet so we can work it out together, but I'm really excited to have him work on it with me. It's going to be SO fun to share - I can't wait!

+ During dinner on his birthday (which he chose - my kids always get to pick anything they want for their birthday dinner), I had everyone go around the table and say what they love about Luke. Matt and I were expectedly mushy about his loving heart and his caring nature, but I especially loved his brother's responses. Jake said he loves how Luke always helps him, and Henry said he loves that Luke tells him he loves him. Gah, my heart!

+ This wasn't planned (and so I guess not exactly intentional), but worth mentioning. We had Luke's grandparents over for cake last night, and it just randomly happened that everyone was standing in a semi-circle in the kitchen with fresh drinks in their hands and Luke sitting on the piano bench in the center. Someone (I think it was my mom), proposed a salute to Luke and everyone cheers-ed their glasses in his honor while he grinned. It was a cute moment. :)

In addition to all of that, I went out of my way to give him extra hugs and kisses, have little conversations with him, and fully-loaded pep talks in the drop off line everyday. I always try to think of something to say as he gets out of the car in the morning - lots of encouragement about the day ahead, I love you's, you got this-es, and things of that nature. He seems to like it.

I hope that this week felt good to him, but it certainly felt good to me! I loved focusing on him this week because, well, he's kind of awesome. :)

Next week, I'm switching gears a bit again and focusing on physical health. Specifically, healthy eating. Even more specifically - healthy winter eating. Meaning I'm going to center my efforts around eating produce that is in season and making healthy food feel comforting and filling the way winter inspires us to eat. As I'm writing this, winter has finally arrived (it's been shockingly mild for Buffalo until now) and the snow is just coming down outside the window. And honestly, all I can think about is digging into some of that leftover cookie cake - haha. So, yeah, next week needs to happen.

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