I made this really fantastically sappy photo montage video for E for his birthday. I was going to put it here today, but since I’m a YouTube Noob, I didn’t factor in a few key issues. So? I can’t show it to you guys. He got to see it last night, but you all will just have to know it involved baby photos backed by Jack Johnson. MANY TEARS WERE SHED.
My kid is officially an adult today.
I don’t talk about his life much here. His trials and tribulations are his and not mine to share. But I feel like I need to at least say this: He is going to be just fine as an adult. He actually had a particularly trying weekend, and he handled it with more grace and dignity than I did.
(I cried a lot.)
I often wish I could document his life like I used to when he was smaller, just so I could have record of his awesomeness to share with the world. As it is – the record stays in my own memories as long as I can hold them.
Just know this: He amazes me in every way. I find myself at a loss for words to describe him simply because – when I do – it sounds so false. I feel like I’m describing some fantasy kid from a book no one likes because everyone knows that there’s NO WAY a teenage boy exists as awesome as he does in the real world.
Yet he does. His awesomeness is real in so many ways, and I can’t ever seem to describe it without…well…over-using the word “awesome”, obviously.
So I resort to the part of his life I always share here. His life as a brother. He cares for his brother and sister in ways I would have never dreamed. If I had hand-picked a brother for my kids I wouldn’t have chosen one as awesome as E – simply because I wouldn’t have believe it be possible.
Last night, Nikki was talking about how much she’ll miss E when he goes off to college. “No one plays tricks with me like he does!” And that is just one small little testament to the love those kids have for him. He plays with them in ways his mean parents just don’t have time to do. Even now, when he has a full platter of teen and adult worries to keep him occupied, he still finds time for them. For all of us. He still prioritizes Sunday family dinner as high as possible in his life. He doesn’t keep his phone out during those dinners. He sits at the table with us every night he’s home and participates in our family. He takes me to movies and musicals. He sends me links to new YouTube channels he knows I’ll like. He always gives birthday and Christmas presents that are sincere and personal. He made me a mix CD once and the last track was him saying, “Happy Mother’s Day to the best Mom in the world. Suck on that Nancy Botwin.”
(He knows how much I hate Nancy Botwin.)
In the sappy video I made him, I described that he changed my life 18 years ago. He put me on a better path, far away from the self destructive journey I had been on before, just by being born. But, he did much more than that in the 18 years since. And now it is time for him to leave my nest and I’m not worried about whether or not he can fly. I know he can. Not because I taught him to fly, but because he is the one who taught me to spread my wings and soar in the skies.
I will never be able to pay him back for that. I am a better person because of him.
Happy Birthday, E. I love you more than Diet Coke.