Today is your 9th birthday. One night when you were almost a year old, I came in to our bedroom crying and Daddy asked me what was wrong. I told him I had just checked in on you and you were asleep in your crib. And you looked GIGANTIC. You were growing too fast and I was awfully emotional about it.
I never really got over that.
As I’ve watched you change from a baby to a toddler, then a preschooler to now a 9 year-old with a sharpening wit and broadening shoulders, I’m so proud of the boy you are. You are at a crossroads of not wanting to grow up in certain ways and stretching and pushing to be older in others. You are already asking for your own cell phone (um, no) yet it’s still cool to have a Clone Wars lunch box and have conversations with me about Legos (because you know for sure that I am absolutely interested. And I am. Without a doubt).
Max, you are my laughter in life. To be fair, so are your dad and sister, but your sense of humor and the things you do out of sheer excitement for the little things in life bring me so much joy. A spontaneous game of dodgeball? Greatest day ever! The Lego catalog comes in the mail? It’s hard to breathe. Memorizing the words to another theme song that you’ve been working on? True sense of satisfaction.
It’s hard to believe that here we are, at the halfway point of your childhood. In another 9 years you’ll be starting your senior year of high school, with age of majority and probably a cell phone bill to pay (you’ll need a job, be expecting that!) I haven’t a clue what the second half of your childhood will be like. Sometimes those years scare me just because people might be looking up to your dad and me to be some kind of example since he’s a youth pastor.
What do I know about raising a pre-teen and teenager? But then again, I know the God that brought us together. A seemingly impossible avenue – we lived on the east coast and your birth mother was all the way in Colorado and we only met for the first time, 6 weeks before you were born. Clearly, he has had every day of your life in His hands.
That’s a good place to be, as you know. The other day you were thinking about how much God knows. Your understanding of Him is ever-growing, especially right now as you seem to be coming up with the conclusions on your own. We passed by another church group worshipping in another building while at the retreat. Their service was in Spanish and you thought it was pretty cool that God understood every language on Earth.
You were in awe about that.
And then, two seconds later, you saw the paddle boats and practically did a forward handspring at the thought of asking Dad if he’d ride one with you.
Best day ever!
Happy Birthday to you, Max. You bring me so much joy in life.