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Aya Eden Ouroboros Newsom’s First Birthday

Today, Angela & I are excited to celebrate Aya Eden’s first birthday! It’s hard to believe that it’s been a year. I mean, we’ve been through a lot, so I feel like it’s been a really intense year, but at the same time, it seems like it was yesterday that we welcomed this little boy into the world.

Aya Eden is happy, healthy and in the past few months has become very precocious. Though we’re not judgmental about others choices, we’re pleased that he’s yet to see the inside of a hospital or doctor’s office. He’s had a few colds and rashes here and there, but he keeps growing, sleeps and eats a varied and nutritious whole food diet, so I think we’re doing OK.

He’s just about to start walking and he’s quickly adding light, belly, penis, bear, ball, and, of course, mama and papa to his babbling vocab. Thankfully he hasn’t pick-up up No yet, but he is shaking his head no. It’s funny how we’ve both been mindful in our attempts to remove No from our spoken communication, so Aya’s picked up on our body language instead! Ah, so many things to be mindful of.

As we move into our second year as parents I’m feeling more confident than I have. The challenges we faced this past year were many and touched all aspects of our lives. As we mediated the angst that I have to assume is “normal” and natural for new parents we also faced adversity by being displaced many times over, coping with the loss of support from some family and friends, and struggling to keep food on the table and our personal health up in the face of this dizzying spiral. Aya Eden’s ever pleasant and caring demeanor served as a beacon through this adversity. His fairly constant giggling and his interest in details and dancing and the assistance of many amazing friends through thick and thin are the things that got us through.

We cannot properly manage the grace required to express our gratitude for the many angels who helped us through this last year. We have been truly humbled and awe-filled by the kindness and wisdom of others, some who we still barely know and others who have become fast and lifelong friends. Thank you for helping Angela, Aya and I, we are continually amazed by the depths that gratitude brings light to.

Angela and I have had the honor of spending the majority of our days and nights together and strive to truly co-raise Aya. We’ve been blessed to offer him the benefit of two parents as constant companions and resources. Though we would have gladly given that up for more security and both sought other employment, now that we are more grounded, financially able and more engaged in an active community we are so pleased that we stuck to our guns and weathered the many invitations to give up on our dreams.

In many ways the challenges we’ve overcome have served to literally ground us in our work. Though we are still learning, we are more deeply connected and committed to our work in Food Security, and Social and Environmental Justice. We have created new partnerships and have collaborated with individuals and organizations that we hold in the highest esteem. Thanks to a personal investment from one of our supporters and friends we have been able to find a real home in North Corktown where our work is becoming more and more community-based and where Aya has a truly urban agrarian neighborhood to grow up in. Naturally we wanted to live here because so many of our heroes do and we’re very pleased to now call many of them friends.

So, as it comes time to mark Aya Eden’s birth on the wheel of the year I have to say that in many ways I think we’re just as excited as Aya seems to be. We’re going to spend the day doing some special things that we think Aya would enjoy, and that we dig too. :) We’re going to visit with some family, sit a birthday puja at the temple, and then we’ll go splurge a bit and enjoy finger foods as we take Aya to the Blue Nile for the first time. Yum!

Our thanks to all of you for your support and your continued interest in our work and in our lives. We would not be here if it were not for each and every one of you, no matter how great or small your role. We look forward to sharing more as Team Newsom continues to evolve in the coming year!

In Love & Light,
Gregg (& Angela)
February 23, 2010


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