Wednesday, September 4, 2013

18 Years

I watch you get in your car and drive away. 
I stand in the doorway; coffee in hand, tears rolling down my face
You're heading off to college
Charging toward adulthood, letting go of my hand just a little bit more
In my mind you were just born, perfect and tiny.
Aunt Trish smiled through her tears when she held you up so that I could see
You were the most beautiful baby...and you were mine

Those first few weeks were so scary
I was so young and totally unprepared for what life just handed me
I wanted so badly to get it right; I'm sorry for the times I got it wrong

You're walking now; charging head first into everything
(I know now this will be the way you always do things!)
There is such a light in you, a sweetness
You draw people to you
Your smile, your laugh, your very presence bring me more joy than I've ever known
You're so smart
You force me to my knees to watch the ants carry food
(You're right, it is a pretty amazing thing to see)
We spend hours playing together and reading books by the lake
You give me Eskimo kisses at bedtime and plead with me to read the book just once more.
 I didn't always
How I wish I had

You're in school now
I see you waiting in line on your first day
Grandma and Grandpa are in the school yard with me as we watch you walk in
You smile as you turned around to wave goodbye
We cried as we walked to the car

Through the years, I have seen some of your friends come and go
Your clothes went from 'dragging on the floor' baggy
To jeans so tight I feared when you sneezed
Long hair, short hair
Piercings, tattoos
I've watched you grow and change and change some more

I wish I would have been easier on you
Let you be you
Had I known how amazing you would turn out to be,  maybe it would have been easier to let go
I doubt it though
I see how amazing you are now and it's hard as hell to let go

Your smile still gets me
I could be two rooms away but  if I hear you laugh, I laugh right along with you
Your 'I love you's' can carry me through the darkest of days

For 18 years I have loved you
And while I may no longer carry you in my arms
I will forever carry you in my heart
Know that you are loved, that you are special and that you'll always be mine
Happy birthday, my sweet, sweet boy


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