Dear youngest child of mine,
you know that song, “you are my sunshine, my only sunshine, you make me happeeee when skies are grey!”
Well, you are my sunshine. Not the only one, but you get to be a member of a small and select group of people I consider sunshine.
So, you’re 12 today. You’re almost as tall as I am now, and starting to show signs of…y’know…(PUBERTY!). As I flip through the photo albums, and look at the squishy little marshmallow baby, always chuckling, and the little boy in overalls zooming his tonka truck around the back yard, and the dignified 3rd grader in his apron in the kitchen, it seems like you’ve only been here a year or two, and it’s been a real treat.
you scared us a couple of times. Your skin tried to fall off for a year or two, but that got fixed up. You spent a week in the hospital after turning yourself inside out from both ends, but that got fixed up as well, but all in all you’ve been a healthy and happy kid. and I thank God for that every single day.
You’re smart like your brothers, confident like your father, and artistic like your mother. You’re generous and kind, and excel at seeing people as individuals rather than some demographic (that’s a new word you’ve learned recently, and you were slightly appalled that people were lumped into groups like that). Your teachers comment on your kindness with others, and how you are not swayed by peers to do something you know to be wrong.
But what I love about you the most is your straight up sweetness. Every night, even at 12 years old, you want to read a story or just sit on the bed and talk. Every morning you sit next to me and ponder what the day will bring. Every afternoon after school you get home, pop a bag of popcorn and share it with me. Every evening you set the table with commentary about how nice it is to sit down and have dinner together. The good stuff never gets old with you, and you keep me mindful of the amazing blessings we have as a family.
I hope and pray every day that you will hold on to that inherent sweetness through the inevitable turmoil of the upcoming years.
Happy birthday #4! I love you very much!