Today my baby boy is 19.
I feel like I’ve lived a whole lifetime since he was born. Greg was pastor of a very small church in Fortuna, CA at that time. Shortly after – Northern California had an earthquake that did considerable damage to our little town and nearby ones. The quake happened in the middle of the afternoon while I was nursing Shawn – and four-year old Ashlee was watching TV nearby. Our family room was a pile of junk and clothes – getting ready for an upcoming garage sale to be held that next weekend. It created a rocking sensation and things began to come out of the cupboards and the TV ‘walked’ out of the entertainment center and almost fell on Ashlee. It was amazing and Greg RAN from his office next door to see if we were alright. We were – just shaken up a bit. But in the night the after shocks were just as bad – but infant Shawn – none the wiser – slept peacefully for the first time ALL NIGHT LONG. The quakes just lulled him to sleep.
It’s crazy what things you remember from the past – sometimes it’s the most insignificant things – the little moments that pass by so quickly. The early bonding we had – the time we had together while he was small – I am grateful for each and every day that I got to spend with him. I was very lucky – I was a ‘stay at home mom‘ for both of my children and I will never regret that.
Shawn was always an easy child with a quick wit and much natural talent. He is everyone’s friend and has that certain ‘X-factor’ that is intangible – but still just a fact that is accepted and acknowledged by everyone who knows him. A favorite with the grandparents and relatives – he just simply is a special person inside and out.
At 19 – he is still trying to find his way – and I am touched by his gentle spirit – the way he interacts with kids younger than himself and the way he ministers with his gifts – using them to bless others.
And yet – in many ways he is still a child – not yet ready to face the world. He is one step closer – but still not ready. He still has some lessons to learn – some pain to face and get through – some hard times to wrestle with and toughen him up – finding his way and finding out who he is and who God has designed him to be. We have done our best with him – and most of our lessons are through – he has absorbed all he can – and now the rest is up to him. And like all parents of boys of this wild and adventurous age – we are anxious for him to make the right choices and hope and pray we have equipped him to do what he needs to do. At this age – the parenting is mostly over for him. And all we can do is pray – and wait.
Happy Birthday to my son who used to light candles for me – play soft music and run a hot bath for me – just because.
Happy Birthday to my son who was very wanted and planned for. I remember praying for you before you were born and asking God for another child – and I knew that child would be special – and you are.
Happy Birthday to my son – who is far from perfect – but who is perfect for me. You make my heart smile – and your humor brightens even the darkest of my days. God gave you to me – to raise, watch over and pray for – He knew what He was doing – you are my gift – my love and my life. And He knew that I needed you. I can’t imagine what my life would have been like without you in it. Each day you make me proud and happy – just by being you – and along with you big sister – you are the best thing that ever happened to me.
I love you
P.S. It’s after midnight now – officially your birthday – I texted happy birthday to you – and just received a text back – ‘ I love you too, Mom – you’re the first to wish that to me, Mom – almost home – wanna chat?’ Ahhh – not too grown up yet.
Yes – I do.