It’s just past midnight, so technically it is now my son’s birthday. The love of my life is 25 years old today. And I remember him learning how to walk as if it was yesterday. I’m going to reiterate something I’ve written before — as it still holds the same meaning in my heart now as when I first put it down on paper a couple of years ago.
A carnival gypsy once told me that the love of my life would be tall, dark and handsome. Somehow she failed to mention he would arrive on the waves of excruciating labor pains. Now, 25 years later to the day, my son can legally buy alcohol, towers over me, and resembles Paul Bunyan. He’s out on his own and I couldn’t be more proud of him. Still, whenever we talk, I oftentimes offer unsolicited advice. No, really, I do. Other mothers do this too, right? Right?? Well of course Jake’s response is usually one borne of frustration because, according to him, I’ve not kept up with his birthdays all these years and therefore don’t know just how old he is. My response is one he will never understand until he has kids of his own – he’s always my baby regardless of how old he may be. Or how tall. Or how thick a beard he decides to grow (I mean really, you do own a razor after all Jake!).
Yes, I do know he’s “all grown up.” But sometimes what I see in Jake’s face (despite his tall stature) is the same little boy who went out to play with me in the snow when we had a midnight storm, the small child whose laugh was forever a bright spot in my day. He is still a bright spot in my day — our conversations always, but always, interesting and spirited with amazingly broad topics. He keeps me on my toes. Of course, I take credit for his love of Marvel Comics and the MCU, even though like Sarah, he knows more about the subject than I do. He has a strong work ethic, integrity, a desire to stand up for those he feels are maligned, and a good heart. In other words, everything a mother could hope for…and more. I could go on and on — but the point is very simple. I love my son. He makes my world a better place just by existing in it.
Perhaps his views will change when (and if) he has a child, but for now, Jake, as with most young people his age, doesn’t understand that when I look at him, I still see that wide-eyed, precocious boy who stole my heart the day he was born.