So I wake up Geo early this morning with:
“Wake up, Geo! It’s your birthday today!!!”
And the first thing he says is:
“Papi, I need to eat my cake!”
This kid here.
Happy Birthday, little Spiderman.
You turn 4 years old today.
Geo was diagnosed with a severe form of spinal meningitis when he was 9 weeks old. Doctors warned that even if he was able to survive, they are not certain of the damage to his spine and mobility in the future. Clearly, his mobility was not affected.
Geo is Indigenous; a mix of Tupi, Mayan and Taino.
Geo took his first few steps just before his 1st birthday at a family member’s house, but didn’t start walking officially until a Capoeira class with Professora Onda in New Orleans a few days after that.
Geo celebrated his first two birthdays at Mardi Gras in New Orleans, Louisiana.
Geo has spent his whole life so far around a martial arts school. Either Capoeira or Judo. He has also only been around other children who train in martial arts. You could see how this is a problem when it’s “playtime” with other children outside of the martial arts world.
When Geo was just 18 months old, we were at a doctor’s office when his mother was pregnant for his sister. In the waiting room, this 4-5 year old was chasing him around and bothering him so Geo knocked him out with a single right hook.
When Geo was 20 months old, he was at a playground for a friends’ birthday party. There was a 4ft. chain link fence around the playground that he cleared, up and over, within 20 seconds.
Geo’s first clear word spoken was “attack”.
At the screening of the films that competed in the 2010 Tampa 48 Hour Film Project, there was a film that had a character in a dark room staring at a door knob. The film cut multiple times from the door knob to the character in an attempt to build suspense. In the middle of the quiet theater of 300 people, Geo yells “Open the door already!” with a burst of laughter that followed from the crowd. He was 18 months old.
Geo absolutely loves the water. From the tub to the pool to the beach. There was a time when the waves at the beach were a little overwhelming for him, so he stands up and yells “STOP!” at the waves with the full intent of thinking they were actually going to stop.
Geo’s favorite superhero is Spiderman.
After hearing some loud bangs from the playroom, his father goes to check only to find him standing in the window sill spread against the window with a red beanie over his whole head. His father tells him he can’t be climbing the walls and windows like that. His reply? “I’M SPIDERMAN!”.
For his 3rd birthday, he got a full Spiderman costume as a present. He put it on immediately and rushed to the front door. When asked what he was doing, he replied “I be right back. I go save people.” He wore it for 3 days straight, including the doctor’s office and supermarket.
Geo once caught a fly while it was in flight with one hand without killing it and let it go outside.
In May 2011, at just 27 months old, Geo became the youngest child ever to be baptized into Capoeira Volta Ao Mundo and receive a cord and apelido. Mestre Rony considers him a prodigy.
Geo’s apelido (Capoeira nickname) is “Rayovac” (pronounced “hi-yo-VAH-kee”). Yes, like the battery. I’m sure you can imagine why.
At the red carpet premiere of one of his father’s films, Invincible, Geo decides to skip the photo ops and kick off his shoes and play Capoeira, complete with with handstands and cartwheels.
When we go to a restaurant, we have an actual routine of having the host/waiter clear the entire table off, thanks to Geo. Everything. Places we are regulars at know the drill. Once, they missed a glass salt shaker and it was tossed two booths down and hit an old man in the head.
He turns EVERYTHING into an improvised weapon. When we go to restaurants, we do our best to give him healthy foods that he can eat with his hands because he is not allowed silverware. Not even spoons.
Geo is banned from the bounce house inside the Sesame Street section of Busch Gardens in Tampa, Florida.
Geo loves music and we’re NEVER allowed to skip over any of his favorite songs in the car. His favorite groups are Wu-Tang Clan, Rage Against The Machine/One Day As A Lion, Green Day and all Capoeira music. And anything else that has a bass drum beat.
Geo also rocks out on his Papi’s guitar, drums and turntables.
Geo understands (and speaks some) 4 languages: English, Spanish, Brazilian Portuguese and Greek. He is also being taught some Japanese and Thai as his father learns.