Cade. I can't believe you're fourteen: that's crazy town. I looked down the other day and realized you have your dad's hands. The years (especially these last five) have flown, and I want the next five to really count.
For your fourteenth birthday, I've given up facebook. I want you to know: no face means more to me than yours. I want to spend more time studying it over games of backgammon and bowls of batter.
And now, a list. Fourteen things I really like about you:
- I like how deeply patient you are, how even-tempered and calm.
- I like how you see right to the heart and choose your friends accordingly. (I really like your friends!)
- I like how you finish what you start and take your time finishing (enjoying the journey).
- I like how you choose not to take anything or anyone (including yourself) too seriously. I love your laugh.
- I like that you're not afraid to act, think, wear! outside the box.
- I like how respectful you are, especially of other people's feelings. I like how you call when you think I'm worried.
- I like how naturally artistic and creative you are: how the drawings, music, and words come easily.
- I like how you grasp concepts and come to understand quickly how things work.
- I like how you can recommend a good book at any time.
- I like how you're always up for one-on-one time with me (board game, play, movie, dinner, etc.).
- I like how you never act embarrassed of me in front of your friends, including the pretty girls.
- I like how you sing with me in the choir and crowd me in the pew, Sundays: how you still put your head on my shoulder, sometimes, during the sermon.
- I like how encouraging you are. ("You sound like Alicia Keyes when you sing, Mom," you say, and, "Have you printed from your blog, lately? Because I haven't read it for awhile.")
- Mostly, I like how you're becoming exactly who you should. I'm thankful that the Lord is faithful; that He redeems; that He can call forth a fascinating, strong boy from two separate households: no big deal; that He lives in your heart and loves you beyond my wildest, human imaginings. That He's got this. You.
I'm so deeply blessed, grateful, honored! to be your mom. Happy Fourteenth Birthday, Cade. I love you.