My oldest child turns 12 today. Twelve. Wow. For his birthday he asked for 8000 Pokemon items. Pokemon. Really? I mean, 1992 wasn’t enough? They had to relaunch and make 20 billion MORE DOLLARS on creepy Japanese creatures?
He also asked for a slumber party. Oh man.
So we did that on Friday night. 5 of his best friends spent the night. As if that weren’t enough short males in one house, we allowed one sibling buddy to sleep over also, making seven short males and 2 short females in one house.
Two tall adults is not enough.
It went fine, actually, and they had so much fun. I survived at least 556 “Your Mama” jokes. But I kept coming down the stairs to them and saying, “HEY! Whose mama are we talking about here…?”
It matters, you know. Cuz, sometimes I’m the mama.
Twelve years ago this moment, I was not yet a mama. The boy had been born but he wasn’t yet mine. I know I do this every year, but for me, it never gets old. For me, every single year I experience the amazement all over again.
Except to search and pray, I had nothing to do with this sweet soul. All I really did was hold out my arms and catch him as he fell from Heaven. I thank God, the Giver, every day.
Last year, I wrote him this letter. I can’t top it, so I’m re-posting it.
Eleven years ago this night you were on the brink of being born. I didn’t know my missing piece was about to be placed into the wedge nothing else could fill. I didn’t even know you existed. I certainly didn’t know you were about to be mine. I get weepy just typing this note to you. You cannot know how much love was sewn into your life’s garment. It’s baffling, really. It took almost 4 years of thinking I knew exactly how God was going to bring my children to me–and failing utterly–to bring me to a quiet, humble place where I could grow into your mom. Without those years, without the emptiness, without my casting around in desperation, I would not have been ready. I wasn’t ready before you. I didn’t know this.
Four years of powerful aching was pacified by a wriggling 7 pound baby with big red lips and a deep, beautiful dimple.
Four years of pain now buried under 11 years of the greatest joy your dad and I have ever known.
You were the perfect baby for us–hand-picked by your Creator.
You were perfect.
You are perfect.
Happy birthday, sweet son.