Monday afternoon. When someone handed me a card to sign for Alcott's birthday while we were out on Saturday, I completely blanked. "Happy Birthday" is just not adequate and I couldn't write what I was really thinking in a card that everyone would read. So, dear readers, here's what I wish I could say to my dear boy today, on his birthday.

"Dear abcdefg,

I know that you are anxious to be grown up, to be done with the restraints of high school, of the foster system, of being a teenager, and that you want more than anything to grow taller quickly, but I want to make an argument for being young a little longer. I remember being your age and being convinced that the best was yet to come, and it is, but it is also right now. This second. And this one. And the next one. There is no final destination where the struggling and the learning and the (sometimes painful) growing's all about the journey, and my gosh, are you having an amazing journey, or what?

* You were the starting quarterback for your football team. As a last minute transfer. When they didn't even have a helmet for you for the first week

* You were the starting point guard for your basketball team and you are now starting in spring basketball on the Varsity team. As a freshman. Unbelieveable!

* You ran track this year even though it terrified you before you started. And you did well, too

* You have learned that "Mom" and "Dad" aren't necessarily related to you by blood and that Love is infinite and ever-growing

* You are going to go to Miami for 10 days this summer to study Forensics and Leadership - how cool is that???

* You have been in love and out of love and back to being friends, all before your 15th birthday. And you handled it all with grace and compassion and made me very proud

As I watch you playing basketball or horsing around with your brothers, I'm sometimes struck by just how grown up you are. The boy that I met 18 months ago was a child and every time I see you there is a little less child and a lot more young man. I'm not sure I'm ready for this, but, ready or not, I'll be with you each step of the way.

So, Happy Birtday abcdefg, from your very proud CASA"


Jolene said…
Holy crap. That was awesome. That's the kinda card that little guy will keep FOREVER.
neca said…
What a loving, affirming thing to write. I hope you do send it to him!!!
How very positive and encouraging your letter is! I think you should send it to him. He will cherish it forever and continue to receive encouragement from reading it over and over.

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