We organised a beautiful party and naming ceremony for you and invited everyone we love - and I missed all but an hour of it. While everyone was having fun in the beautiful sunshine I was in bed having spent the night up with an upset stomach. I pulled it together to read your naming ceremony and hold a fragile court from a deck chair while trying not to wretch at the smell of the pulled pork, coleslaw, homemade trifle and Pavlova and beautiful birthday cake.
Happily no one remembers their first birthday so I don't think you'll be cross with me. It will be a funny memory and the fact that I wasn't there doesn't for one moment detract from your special day. I still managed to make a few people cry - just like at did at Rufus' naming. And as ever I meant every word. I know that thanks to the bouncy castle (and my very weak I've-been-vomiting-all-night voice a few people couldn't hear me) - so here it is again for you all and of course for your little Laurie.
Laurie Peter Jones – Naming Ceremony – 28th July 2013
In this past year we have welcomed Laurie into our little family and into our hearts. We all wondered if those hearts had enough room left for another little boy – but they grew to meet you and you’ve found your own little space in our world.
You’ve grown from baby Laurie into Laurie – our youngest son and Rufus’ little brother. And your name is very important. It is how you first came to know yourself as separate being. We chose your name, Laurie, with love and we hope it affords you a long and happy life. It means victory and of course we hope you will always be victorious.
The most special thing for us has been watching the love between you and Rufus grow. The way your smile lights up your face when he comes home; the way you have to cuddle him every morning and how Rufus says “well done Laurie” in a tone that might just have the slightest undertone of sarcasm. I will never forget the fear and excitement I felt when Rufus came to meet you for the first time, or the look of delight and pride on his face as he peered over the edge of your cot and saw his baby. We love you both so very much – even if we are grumpy sometimes.
As parents we brought you into this world and we will do our utmost to help to guide through it. A poet called Mary Oliver finished one of her poems with the words: Tell me, what is it you plan to do with your one wild and precious life? And that’s the question we are here to ask Laurie today. We want him to live his precious life how he wants to, but we want to let him know that we will always be here to help him if he needs us. Laurie we will make the same promises to you that we made to Rufus:
We promise to always be here for you, to listen when you talk and to guide you through life’s joys and hardships.
We promise to respect and support your choices and nurture your dreams. We will share with you our talents and strengths and guide you away from our weaknesses.
Most importantly we promise to love you forever.
So far Laurie’s life has been all about our little family of four – but now he is one it’s time for him to start taking his first steps into the world. So we have asked you all here today to help us set him off on that journey. Everyone here will have some impact on the sort of person Laurie ultimately becomes. We all share the responsibility of shaping him into a person and we’d like to ask all of you to pass on your love, knowledge and wisdom to him as he grows up.
We have asked that some of our friends take a special role in Laurie’s life – as “guide parents” if you will. James and Aimee and Dellie and Matt who have shared our parenting journey so far and who understand that sometimes some outside help is just what you need! And our old friends Rebecca and Nick who are just starting out on this mummy and daddy thing but who we know will be fantastic parents too.
We’d like to ask the six of you to make one simple promise to Laurie – and that is to always be there for him in those moments when we as his parents aren’t able to help and guide him.
Perhaps the most important person to make a promise to Laurie today is his big brother Rufus. Rufus, big brother’s have a big responsibility. Long after we are gone and are watching you both from the stars, we need you to continue to love and look out for Laurie – to cheer him up when he’s sad and cuddle him when he falls down. Because as Alfie would say – he’s your little brother and you’re his big brother – and you’ll go on being that forever – even until you’re grown up.
Finally, of course, we would like to say some thank yous. As ever to our families for their unfailing love and support and the much needed respite care they provide for us and the children. And to our friends with babies – we couldn’t do this without you lot keeping us sane. We hope to share our highs and lows with you for many more years to come.
I of course would like to thank Tim for being a wonderful Daddy. For letting me have another year “off” on “holiday” playing with the children. And for always looking after us.
There’s just one last thing to do and that is for us to wish Laurie well in his precious life.
"Myself and Aimee are so happy to be here today celebrating Laurie's naming day with him and all of you.
"With parents like Tim & Beck, Laurie will have many more days like this - days where he is surrounded by love, laughter, good food and good people.
"My wish for Laurie is that he grows up to have the strength and humour of his mum, the quiet determination and peaceful nature of his dad, but most importantly, none of their horrendous taste in music.
"I hope Laurie looks back at this day, and realises he is blessed to have so many people surrounding him who love him".
I would like to say the hugest of thank yous to my family and Tim for stepping in and taking over to make sure everything could still go ahead without me. You're all legends and I love you all very much. xxx