My fresh energy today comes from the Milestone of Milestones, the Big Day of Big Days.... the First Teenager In the House. Talk about nostalgia - all week I have been looking at old videos, thinking of his first words, his funny little phrases, oh gosh. The misty eyes, they well up at every moment!
I can only be referring to sweet Cole.
What is better than new birthday shoes? Not much.
This morning I made random announcements like "Oh Cole, you were born exactly 11 hours from now, in the evening!" "Well, right about now I was vacuuming the house, ignoring the beginning contractions..." "Ooh, ooh, I was talking to Aunt Vera and Emily now, nervously asking for advice..."
Frankly, I am a little impressed at the staying power of my memory. Thirteen years later! Ta-da! But don't ask about last week. Good luck with that recall. All hail the power of pregnancy & birthing hormones, searing in those selective memories.
I want to say so many things to this boy. Things that may be unsaid in the scurry from school to homework to baseball to bedtime.
You are handsome and athletic, and every time you make an awesome play at short stop, I wish your Pop-pop was around to see you play ball. You make it look easy. Not with the flashy swagger so commonly associated with athletes - but with a quiet ease. Calm and collected, you are so solid. As lead-off batter, confident and assured - you take the weight of being first and make it happen at the plate. Nobody wants that job, did you know? But you get out there, you start things off, you do what needs to be done - with the right attitude. Keep that attitude. That confidence tempered with humility.
You are kind and loving. It warms my heart to hear that you befriend new students, and think of how lonely and out-of-place they may feel. That empathy will carry you far, your entire life. Never forget to spend a moment in someone else's shoes, and act accordingly. And never stop asking if you can hold a friend's new baby - that tenderness and care for the little ones is a treasure.
You are bright and clever. Yeah, I said it. Despite my constant pushing and questioning and driving. Even though I want to see those perfect grades, I guess I want more for you to be happy - and that means that I have to back off. It's hard, you stinker. You drive me crazy with your announcements of quizzes you forgot to study for: "Oh yeah, we had a science quiz today." Cue Mom, going ballistic, starting into a tirade of how you should write in your agenda. Cue Cole, smirking and waiting for me to shut up. "Relax Mom, I got a 97." You've got my lucky streak, so I shouldn't complain - but still, you should study, kid. I never used that luck for school, preferring to put in the hours. Maybe you've got something there, after all.
Things like this should be said. At least on a birthday. At least now and then.
Happy 13th, Best Boy.