Sage: 47 Months

It’s been a long, hard month for us.

You seem to have more or less adapted to life in Syracuse. The first couple of weeks involved a lot of crying about missing people in Indianapolis and not really understanding why you were upset, which made you more upset. Since then, you’ve started to get used to the idea that we live here, even though we’re not in our own house yet.

You’ve really enjoyed being around my parents and making some new friends — in particular, Abel, Abbie, and Lily, all of whom I hope you get to spend a lot of time with over the next several years.

You’ve also gotten into a bad habit of getting up, repeatedly, after we’ve put you to bed. We’ve had to put you back to bed as many as a dozen times before you finally stop fighting falling asleep.

Some of this, we attribute to your age; some to you just figuring out what you can and can’t do, and who you are. Which, I guess, is pretty much all about your age, too.

The one thing that has really surprised me this month is that you’ve asked us, repeatedly, for siblings. Specifically, you want a younger brother — and two older sisters. Which is a little tricky.

We’re hoping that by the time I’m writing your four-year letter that we’ll own a house out here, although whether or not we’ll have been able to move in yet is questionable. (We hope to renovate the kitchen first thing.)

You know that you’re going to get to choose the paint colors for your room, and you’re very excited about that. You have definite opinions about colors.

I’m going to jump straight to the advice, here.

As always: be who you are. Always be who you are, even if who you are today isn’t who you were yesterday. It probably won’t be who you are tomorrow, either.

But along with that: pay attention to who your friends are. Not just which people are “really” your friends, because, for good reasons and bad, that can change, too.

What I mean is, when you have a friend, pay attention to them. Pay attention to what they like, what they don’t like, what they say, what they don’t say. Take notes, if you have to. (I have to; I’ve really just started.) It’s taken me nearly 40 years, but I’ve started to realize that to have the friends I need, I need to be the friend I need. It takes effort, sometimes. Take the time to make that effort.

I don’t think you’ll have a problem with that. You have a heart for helping others, like your mother does. And a great memory, like your mother, too.

I love you, Sage. More than I can say. Your mother and I both do. Thank you for being the most wonderful daughter I could have ever hoped to have. It makes being Daddy even more wonderful than I could have ever dreamed.

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