(Penned Sept. 24, 2015)
So we know how it really went down, don’t we, my Boy.
And you at twenty-two still want me to cut your hair, and I still count it a privilege. And you still like to cut up at supper time, make us laugh at all your silliness, still cut through the thick stress of this house and lighten the place up a bit. And I? Still cut a smile every time.
Yeah, I know. It hasn’t always gone down this way, and we still have our "moments" on occasion. And there have been some slammed doors and… slammed hearts on the way here, right?
Like when your toddler-temper got the best of you, and Preschool Teacher, Mrs. O’Phelia, informed me that a little cowboy boot on her shin didn’t feel too good. (Hard not to laugh at that one, but I can promise, you didn’t see it!)
Like when you jumped the gun at the track meet, heart set on qualifying for state your senior year, a locker room witnessed bloody knuckles—messy reminder of your heart pain. And Mama’s pain knowing there wasn’t one blasted thing I could do to turn time backwards and make you wait a nana-second longer.
Like during the foul-mouthed rap phase I just about had to drag you through and out of and was so elated when you finally started listening to less degrading tunes!
No, we haven’t always seen eye to eye, you and me, and this ain’t always been easy, but given the chance? I’d do it again in a minute. And again. And again.
Because that’s what this Mother-Son thing does. It loves even when the road’s not so smooth. Even when we know the best—and the worst—of each other. It keeps giving hugs after giving glares. It keeps sharing life’s ups and downs and in-betweens together, always remembering what’s at the root of it …The *Root* of it.
Yeah, it’s a lot like that God-Child relationship, the one we have with a Father who loves us even when we kick the Teacher or jump the gun and bust up our hands or listen to the blaring enemy instead of God’s still small voice—when we’re growing up.
He loves us and says He’d do it over and over again for this toddler-tantrum-throwing world. This sin-wrecked planet with its glares and slams and bloody messes. He keeps loving anyway, offering Himself on a bloody cross, and proving He is never going anywhere.
So on this birthday, can I just tell you? The past twenty-two year roller-coaster ride has been the most exciting I could’ve ever imagined. And I’m thankful He saw fit to bless me—us—with the gift of all your crazy, fun-loving, quackiness, all your deep gazes that make we wonder what’s going on in that head of yours, all your motivation and competition and drive. Makes me smile sitting here. And Mama’s love runs deep, my child, and wishes for you on this day as many smiles as you’ve given me throughout the years.
Looking forward to watching you play ball tonight. You know, I’ll always be your biggest fan.
Happy Birthday, College Boy. I love you
- The Branch and The Vine
- When Birthday Boys Become Men