Sun, Fern and Kangaroo

Sun, Fern and Kangaroo: The beginning of my life chapters

Baby Jordan in the tendjere, cooking up a storm 
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Picture this: on the early hours of March 26, 2002 at 2am in the morning, my mother was just hopping into bed. Her waters would break, and just before midday at 11:37AM at the Old Royal Women’s Hospital, Jordan Ariki Isaac Ristovski would be welcomed into the world. Or should I say, the beginning of my life chapters


My dear mother, holding me as a baby


The story goes that my father and two grandmothers were present for the birth. My Baba (dad’s mother) was so excited, she was  seen speeding like a madwoman, ducking and weaving in traffic, past other relatives whom were trying to make it to the birth. This is coming from a woman who follows all road rules with much obedience. My father was called from work on the security door at the casino- he was told your wife is going to have a beautiful baby. There would however be minor complications in getting me out, as I was a ridiculously large baby. I was 9.1 pounds heavy and 52cm long. My feet would come out twisted in the wrong position- otherwise known as talipes.


My dear father and I, in my parent’s bed. The cot was quite rare for me


Talipes was probably the first of many fights of my life. My feet were bound with special bandages only mere weeks into my life, to ensure they’d be straightened correctly. But in true Jordan spirit, the first battle was won confidently. I’ve been remembered as a quiet, lazy baby, never a disturbance to anyone. I wasn’t walking until I was 18 months old, and at my first Christmas, it irritated my parents slightly when they’d brought all these very expensive presents, and I was more interested in playing with the wrapping paper!


Baby Jordan, with the special bandages


I also had a much larger appetite back then, to the point my parents decided to place me on solids a bit earlier than usual. They had to lie through their teeth to the Maternal Health Nurse when she remarked with a hint of suspicion how much of a fat baby I was! Another story is told of a wedding we attended, where one of the wedding party  speeches was ridiculously long. My mother pinched me until I cried as an excuse to leave the room and not listen to that boring man’s speech!


Look at how chubby those cheeks are!


Whilst I only remember this part of my life orally from others, I always know I was very loved from this age. Every uncle, Aunty, elder, friend and associate wanted to hold me as a baby and I was always picked from an early age to be a standout from the rest. Being both Baba and Dedo’s first grandchild meant a lot to them, and I was ridiculously spoilt by both when my parents still had their work commitments. My first toys were Tonka Trucks, and many other smaller toys kept in a red, blue and yellow bag, as my mother never let anything be a physical mess! We still have those Tonka trucks today


My Dedo Riste (Dad’s dad) holding me


My first trip on a plane was to Sydney, and my first overseas trip to New Zealand. I would develop such a love for the country it would essentially become my other childhood home. When I turned into a young, talkative toddler, I would follow every adult around like a bad smell. My age group never really appealed to me at the time and for many years to come. I’ve always loved the elders, for they’ve taught me what I’ve known


My Nana and Koro- Mum’s parents at their old home, New Zealand


Young, innocent baby Jordan would never be prepared for what would eventually come of his life. But he certainly had enough happiness, chewing toy cars and quality time being a young nudist to prepare him for his future life and the old soul that everyone knows him as today


The message at the start of my baby photo album, written by my mother and father. I start to cry every time I read it 


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