Today is J’s eighth birthday and I am a state away. He’s a little bummed, and I’m trying not to think about it. He puts up with so much crap daily, and here I go off to a conference on his birthday. If it were any conference other than SENG, or if it had seen anywhere but an hour away, I would have stayed home. But I needed to be here for multiple reasons and driving distance is my favorite kind of distance.
J, you are an amazing child. You may only be eight, but I can already see glimpses of the man you are going to become. You are strong and sweet and loving. You adore animals and being silly. No matter how I try, I canNOT get a photo of you smiling with teeth. You never fail to give me a big hug and kiss when you go off to school or camp, and you have more patience than your age would suggest. Probably how you’ve managed to not strangle your brother to this point. A good life skill to have, darling.
It’s killing me that I’m missing your birthday, but you’re having a great Guys Day, and (God help me), your sleepover birthday party is next week. And I needed to be at the SENG conference. I’m learning so, so much, and I’ll be able to bring what I learn back home to be a better mom for you and your brother. Hopefully next year we can all go; it’s in Orlando and a working vacation sounds fantastic.
I’m curious to see what the next year brings you. See, A had a baaad 3rd grade year, and I pray that’s not the case for you. I’m not ready to homeschool both of you, I can barely handle one right now. I’m cautiously optimistic that you will thrive this year, and will do everything in my power to help you do so. You are such an awesome kid, and I love being your mom.
Happy birthday, sweet boy. You might think I’m only here for your brother, but I’m here for all of us. The best gift I can give you is what I learn and apply from this weekend.