Today you're twenty-three years old. You were my baby for twenty years. Then you became my middle child in the course of three minutes. How blessed I am to have you.
As I sit here writing this birthday letter to you .... I smile. For I know, that you know, how much I love you. I am your biggest fan and one of your best friends, as well as your Mother. I'd go the extra mile for you and more. Beyond all limits, because I am your Mother ... and you are my son.
You came into this world in a blinding blizzard. You came easy and quickly, and were so beautiful and perfect. Except for the last three years, you have always been my baby. That was special to me. Although I love you all equally, you were special because I believed in my heart, I would never have another child.
As you grew I couldn't have ask for a better child. You caused me no worries and I have always been so proud of you. You didn't give in to peer pressure and you chose your path wisely. Now you're a teacher of man. I'm proud of that. You followed the path of education. .... and you chose to educate children.
As I sat here last night thinking of what I would write to you .... I thought of several things. I was reflecting back on your love of life. I remember how much you nurtured the animals in your life. How very much you loved them and had a bond with them. A wonderful light would shine in your eyes and your heart was so full.
I thought about the Mother's Day that you all bought me a bicycle. You were still a little boy, and way too small to ride such a big bicycle. I turned my back for one brief moment and you manged to hop onto that bike. How you kept your balance I'll never know. Time stood still for me, and I know I didn't breath, as I ran after you down a steep brick lined street. The crash at the bottom of that hill, at the time, was the worst thing I'd ever experienced in my life. The car shreeched to a halt at the same time you crashed the bicycle. From my point of view, I thought the car had hit you.
I'll never forget the feelings I had as I reached you laying unconscious on that hot pavement. I'll never forget the fear that washed over me when I couldn't wake you up. Standing there frozen in fear, I thought I had lost you forever. In my panic, I could only stand and scream, and make sure no one touched you until the ambulance came. But you were okay. A pampered night in the hospital and you were as good as new with only a few scrapes and bruises.
I learned in those few moments that life is precious, and in a heartbeat, it can be gone and change your course forever. We were lucky. God chose to keep you here and keep you perfect.
Now after all these years, I want to apologize for something I did to you. At the time, I thought it was funny ... and on occasion, I still do. I'm sorry for "zip-tieing" your arm to your bicycle in the garage. I made you cry and I laughed and took your picture. It was all in a joke. You thought so too until I wouldn't cut the strap and set you free. For that, I'm sorry. But I do have to tell .... you asked me to show you how that zip-tie worked and thought you were Houdini. Ha ~
Now you're a married man, much in love, and live in Mississippi. I miss you being physically close to me, but no matter where you are .... you'll always be right here in my heart and a phone call away.
I'm happy for you Jared. You're doing well in your life and again, I have no worries. Thank you for that.
Friday, January 4, 2008