Today my baby is twenty. This is the second time in his twenty years he has not been home on his birthday. He did stop home Sunday for a few hours, en-route from Madison where he spent a fun filled Halloween weekend. After dinner, I produced a cake with candles. He humoured me, blowing out the candles as the obligatory photos were taken. When it was time for him to leave, he gathered up the few groceries I had put together for him along with the leftover cake and continued his journey to Duluth, where he is attending university.
For me this is one of those double-edged sword days. I am proud of the wonderful, caring loving man he has grown into. He has only crashed my car once. Gotten a few speeding tickets but overall he has been very responsible and trustworthy.
What I miss and what never fails to bring a tear to the eye is the memory of my beautiful boy with corn silk blond hair, perfect little bow mouth and big vibrant blue eyes, the colour I can only liken to that of the Aegean Sea. The baby boy who the first eighteen months of his life was a permanent fixture on my hip. Who would grab my face with both his hands turning it towards him, if my attention strayed from him for too long. A toddler, who squealed with glee, wrapping his arms around my legs when I arrived home after an absence of more than ten minutes. The way he ungracefully mimicked his older sister’s Irish dancing. Stomping around the hallway with feet of lead, in his own enthusiastic interpretation of a reel. How he would inform me he wanted to sing and as I put on the “Woman’s Heart” CD he put on the massive headphones and sang his little heart out, “Only da wubans, only da wubans.” His other headphone and party piece favorite was, “Sonny”. Even as I write this, my eyes fill with the wistful tears that always accompany these cherished memories.
It brings a smile to my face and my heart as I recall him standing in the kitchen, watching me intently, and then very seriously informing me, he thought it was a, “Seven Brides for Seven Brothers” day. He loved that movie, filled with singing, dancing and bright colours. With a pot of tea, we would head into the sitting room put in the tape and make ourselves comfortable on the sofa. He would snuggle up to me positioning himself, as close to his afore mentioned favorite hip and together we would watch the movie. Hitting pause to answer questions he would inevitably pose during the viewing.
I savour these and numerous other special moments spent with my precious boy. As I watched him sing or sat with him on the sofa, I was keenly aware, these wonderful years were borrowed time. I was conscious to the fact it would all pass too quickly. What I did not anticipate was the lightening speed in which these days of wonder actually did flash by. It seems I blinked and my beautiful baby boy became a man. So, today I smile and those wistful tears fill my eyes as I remember. As I celebrate my beautiful boy who is twenty today.
James Dickey said,"There are so many selves in everybody, and to explore and exploit just one is wrong, dead wrong." Thank you for joining me as I strive to discover those other selves. I hope you enjoy reading my endeavours. I would be delighted to hear your comments and feedback. You all come back now hear! Ann
I am a wife and mother of four, made redundant by children who insisted on growing up. I divide my time between Wisconsin and Ireland. I am a writer, who has finally decided it’s time to brave the big scary world and try to get something published. I hope you enjoy my efforts!