When Birthday Boys Become Men


So you moved out and a mountain of hurt moved in.

And I didn’t think you would go or it would come like that. But it did.

And it was all I could do to keep from standing in front of your truck in a desperate arm-flailing minute yelling, “Wait, Son, I’m not finished yet!” But I stood on the porch waving goodbye instead, missed opportunities crushing.

And later we all held hands there in your new empty living room while Daddy prayed over it and you and whoever else might eventually live there, and tears slipped again.

Because you see, Son, I just wasn’t ready, and if only I could scoop up all one-hundred-something pounds of you and carry you back to the moment I carried you home all swaddled up like a burrito with one end open, cone head sticking out, eyes swollen and new and blue as the sea—Oh, I would!

If I could take back the Busy-Mama barking-orders and all the times I yelled, “Hurry up!” and just sit next to your 4 year-old, 10 year-old, 13 year-old self and peer into those deep blues—I would.

If I could be there again and laugh and let loose and stop the spinning personal-pursuit whirlwind, put brakes on racing thoughts and racing through time—I would.

Oh hear me, Child … time never waits for us, you know. Time doesn’t care if we “get it” (or if we *ever* get it). Time marches on unapologetically, with or without us, whether we’re where we need to be or not.

And one day we have all these years to invest, and the next? They’ve dropped silent like fallen golden stars. So beautiful. So precious. So brief. You blink? You miss them.

And I’d give anything for all the times I closed my eyes, missed beauty your star-lit Child-Soul poured forth. Yeah, there’s no changing that I’m afraid.

So when you call and say you want to catch a movie or go out to eat or take me for a ride on your new four-wheeler, my heart does this thing … this spill-right-over joy thing. Because it knows pure God-given grace when it sees it.
And the only plausible response is ridiculous joy-filled gratitude to the One who hung golden stars in night skies, who placed you in the Universe at the perfect time, despite my busy schedule, who formed a rock-solid Mother-Son bond that no “missed opportunity” could shake.

It’s all because of Him, my Boy, the One who hung and dropped silent on a grace-filled cross, and everyone closed their eyes as if it didn’t happen. And they missed it.

My prayer for you this 25th year, this quarter of a century celebration, is that you don’t miss it. That you watch for falling stars whenever you can. That you see the fallen—and risen!—Savior. That you stop and pause and sit and listen. That you peer into The Word and the world and make years coming count for something, that they’re not some mad dash to the next “big break” but an easy stroll down Simple Lane.

Yeah, and when you’re here this weekend and we’re all singing Happy Birthday and you see me lean in close and peer deep, smile big, you’ll know why … it's the inexpressible joy your presence brings, the grace we were all given when God graced us with you.

Looking forward to hanging out, my Eldest. Couldn’t think of anyone I’d want to be with more. Happy Birthday, Hon. Love, Mama


Dillon as baby 001  


Dillon revised again IMG_8731









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