I'm officially old...
I must be....
My oldest child turns 21 today. Technically not until about 8:52 tonight, but as a non-specific mention, he's 21. He'll have to let me have a picture of the two of us together today. It's a mother's right to have pictures of her babies on these special birthdays - the ones where it becomes all too obvious that they're not your little kids anymore. I mean, when did this really happen?
I don't recall when it happened that I missed this much of his life, though I don't think I have really. And I don't recall that he grew so tall so quickly, though I'm sure he didn't... I don't recall that I missed so many opportunities to tell him how proud I am of him or how marvelous I think he is - most of the time, though I'm sure I didn't.
I just wish we were able to keep them smaller, less jaded, less experienced, less "wisenheimer", less "old" just a little while longer.
Though 21 is not really a magical age, and nor is the 18 my middle one turned just a short month ago, the world somehow expects more, offers less, and is less tolerant of things that are seemingly aberrant when you're "21" or "18". I suppose the reasoning is if you're old enough to make a decision to drink, smoke, vote, go to war, carry a gun, etc you're old enough to be responsible for yourself. While most people feel this should be 18, I'm all for raising the legal age to 30, (not really) just to have my "babies" a little longer. I really wish my babies could stay my babies just a little longer.
I miss my little boys.
I miss when they called me mommy all the time, not just when they needed something.
I miss when they snuggled with me in the bed to watch a movie and eat popcorn.
I miss though sloppy ice cream kisses because you let them get a treat "just because".
I miss when going to the park to swing and slide were "the best days ever!".
I miss when they used to sneak out of the house to make footprints on the carport roof with their Barney the Dinosaur slippers that made dinosaur prints in the snow.
I miss when they used to giggle together and have tickle battles that Mommy always won.
I miss playing board games and "letting" them win.
I miss the sweet movies we used to watch together instead of the ones that will make a momma blush seeing "too much skin" in front of my boys who are so not boys any more.
I miss them understanding I had to know where they were going, with whom, what parent would be there and the phone number where they could be reached because I needed to know who was supervising and being in charge of the well being of my precious treasures.
I miss making oatmeal in the morning with apples and cinnamon and cinnamon toast and cheese toast.
I miss popcorn with parmesan cheese and so many of their other favorite snacks.
I miss chasing them around the house while they were running naked and free from me, giggling wildly because they "got away" after bath time.
I miss the innocence of their world that got a crack in it about 15 years ago and I miss the days before it was shattered 8 years ago.
I miss having these particular two little boys...
I love my men though. I love who they are becoming. I love how generous their hearts are and how they care so much for things they really believe in, even if we don't always agree. I love the passion of their convictions because it means I did my job in teaching them to stand up for those things in which they truly believe.
I love that no matter what they feel for their siblings at the moment, no matter what fight they may have had, they are still each other's number one supporter.
I love how they love their little brother and play with him, offer him help and tips on video games, give him their old video games and "special toys" and just generally give him good hints on being a "dude".
I love their manners when they're around other people.
I love that they remind their friends how to treat a lady and be chivalrous in a world that doesn't really celebrate chivalry any longer.
I love that they have old fashioned values when it comes to women.
I love that they feel like I'm the most important woman in their life still and they're not afraid to let me know that.
I love that even though they spend the majority of their time away from home, they're not afraid to kiss and hug me in front of their friends.
I love that when we end our phone calls, it always ends with an "I love you" from both of us no matter who's in the room.
I love that when their friends are complaining about their moms, my boys actually tell people they really like their mom. (Thank goodness for snitching girlfriends and the girlfriends of their friends who tell on them and remind me of how awesome my kids really are.)
I am so grateful for the chance I have had to raise these amazing young men. I'm so glad to be able to call them my sons. While they're not "there" yet, they're well on their way and I'm so lucky to know that they are good, solid, kind, caring, smart, giving people.
Yep, I'm sad, and I'm officially old. But I'm one lucky lady, so I suppose it's not all so bad.
Happy birthday sugar! I sure do love you!