It’s hard to believe we have spent a decade together. Sometimes I want to go on a rooftop and shout, I survived! But though the temptation to pat myself on the back rises up, I know it was only with God’s grace I was able to make it this far. I pray daily His grace helps me continue.
You see, in the first post of this more than week-long countdown to your special day I made mention of what a gift you were to me. And it’s so true, Tof. You still are that gift. But it was not always easy. In fact, it was harder than I’ve ever felt comfortable talking about before.
You, more than anyone, would know–though you didn’t understand as you were only a wee babe–how very alone I was. How very afraid. And though I’ve painted a pretty picture these last few days, you–more than anyone–would know the times were not always as beautiful as pictures on a screen would have people believe.
You bore much of the brunt of my anger and frustrations. You, a blameless precious baby, on the receiving end of my selfishness. The words I was always meant to be a mother can ring true, and yet the actions can show such a different story. I wanted my own life, free from responsibility. A baby does not allow for that. And while many think I did a stupendous job, I know the truth.
I know the pain of regret and of sorrow of time wasted. So often at night I can’t sleep when I allow my mind to wander to those first few years of our life together, and like a dagger in my soul I wish it could have been so different. I would have done it so differently. So much better.
No, it wasn’t all terrible. We had our good days and our amazing moments. But much of it is marred by a very sinful girl trying to figure out a mess of a life she allowed to be created and you born into.
I am so grateful of how far I have come, not on my own accord but on the great mercy shown to me by the God I hope you too will serve one day with all your heart, soul, mind, and strength. Without Him, Tof, I don’t know what I, or we, would have done.
You have been such a shining light in my life, little man, even as this has been a tough year where again you sometimes see sin take more control of me than I would like.
You ended second grade on SUCH a high note getting awards from all your teachers! You played on a Little League team for the first time and was selected to be on the All-Star Team. You continue to take piano lessons and are enjoying playing around on your Fender electric guitars. I am so glad you still love music as you have since you were just a toddler! It’s how I know it really is your God-given gift.
Third grade has been HARD and yet, to our surprise, you made it onto the Scholastic High Honors honor roll! More importantly, you were on the Citizenship Honor Roll which will always mean more to us than any academic achievement because it shows you continue to demonstrate the Fruit of the Spirit to your teacher.
Much to your father’s delight, you now love the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles and even indulge him by watching some Dolphins game even though the only thing you really care about are your beloved Mets and when you get to watch them again.
We continue to have so much fun together–summer days in the pool; tickle monster fights on the bed. Your love language has always been quality time and though I often let tiredness or busyness win and tell you “I just can’t” or “I have something else I need to do,” I’m glad that more often than not I remember to be grateful that you do still want to spend time with me and I let everything else fall by the wayside.
Because the dishes in the sink, and the clothes that need to be folded, and even a blog post swirling in my mind don’t have the eternal value that spending time with you will.
Christofer, I continue to be so proud of you, the choices you make, your desire to read the Word consistently, and simply of who you are. I daily–or at least I try to remember daily to–thank God for allowing me to be your mother.
I don’t deserve you or the happiness you have brought me, and yet God allows me to have it. Thank you, Lord.
I pray you have the best birthday ever and with all the more seriousness I pray this is the year you will be saved. Sometimes Daddy and I think you are, but we just don’t know for sure.
I pray you continue to make good choices and work hard in school.
I pray and I hope with every fiber in my being you will always know the love I have for you. I am always here for you, little man.
Happy 9th birthday, Christofer. It’s been an amazing journey.
You are amazing.
Love you to the moon and back,