"Daniel, you're going to be 23 in two days!"
"Yeah, I know, mom."
Whoa. That thought hit me while we were driving back from town two days ago. There I was, comfortably cruising along with him being 22, and next thing I knew, a whole year had zoomed by, just a blur out my window, it moved so fast.
And now here we are on October 13, the day 23 years ago that I first laid eyes on this amazing kid... um, man... oh, gosh, what do you call your kids when they get to be so old?
...love at first sight...
This will be the first birthday in several years I'll get to see him on his actual birthday, since he's back living at home.
I know it's not where he hoped to be on his 23rd birthday, but he's got such a great attitude about it, teaching me by example about hope, optimism and 'chill'.
He's been spoiling me and Tom while he's here... loading the dishwasher, taking out the trash without being asked, feeding and walking the dogs, cooking dinner, helping Tom with jobs around the property, watching movies with us... whatever we ask him to do, he jumps on it, eager to help. He even seems to enjoy being with us! Most of the time, anyway.
Tom and I got used to that really quick. I feel blessed having this extra time with him, not because he's so helpful (although that's a definite plus!) but because he's just a great kid man guy (there, that sounds right)... so funny and smart, as well as thoughtful. (I've already written tons about how great he is HERE and HERE and HERE and HERE if you don't believe me.)
So today I'll make sure I don't ask him to do anything. I'll try to go back to my old ways and spoil him by cooking him breakfast (he's sleeping in for a change... one advantage of not having a job yet!), fixing the King Ranch Casserole he requested (after dozens of "What do you want for your birthday?" pleas from me) and the Cyclops cookies he didn't request but I know he loves.
(Why is it mothering always revolves around food, especially when our babies get older?)
May you have clear paths and bright skies.
And no matter what this year brings,
I hope you continue to "Be silly. Be honest. Be kind."
(Ralph Waldo Emerson)
Also... Happy birthday wishes to Kim, my sweet previously-Montana-now-Arizona sister-in-law... young cousins Ashley, Kayce and Kayce's daughter, Tayvie (celebrating her first birthday!)... and Pete, my inspirational blogging friend, who wrote a wonderful, reflective piece today in honor of his birthday (go here to read it - it's great!)