Wednesday, November 13, 2013

Thankful for 11 Years

by Leigh

Dear Jack,

Before I had you my life was full of happiness and my heart was full of love.....full of love for your dad, my family, my friends. But then on that Thursday in November when you were born I felt as though my heart must have tripled in size bursting at the seams with an indescribable love.  Everything I had ever wanted was right there in my arms.  

As a first time mom I was always nervous that I wasn't doing something right.  I'm pretty sure you were looking up at this clueless lady thinking "she's the one who is going to raise me?" 
Were you hungry? teething? fussy? should I lay you on your back? on your tummy? am I holding you too much? Am I going to scar you for life with all my first time mommy woes? All those questions swirled around in my head on a daily basis until one day things seemed to just click.  I learned to trust my instincts.  Of course there were (and still are) lots of days where I question I teaching you right? am I too tough?  am I too laid back? There is a lot of pressure that comes along with being a parent.  I want to guide you, protect you, hold you close but I also need to let you find your way, learn to take care of yourself and become your own person.  I'm still learning how to balance on that fine line.  Hopefully I'm doing alright.

You are such a special kid!  And I'm not just saying that in a "I'm your mom so of course you're are" kind of a way.  You really are and people notice that about you.  I can't even begin to count the number of times people have told me how special you are.  My heart swells with pride every time I hear someone say that their son looks up to you.  Kindness comes second nature to you. You listen to your heart and that reminds me so much of your great grandfather.  There is no doubt in my mind that he is walking with you through life helping to guide your way.  

You have always seen things differently.  I remember one of your first drawings.  It was of a house and looked like a typical house that a 4 year old would draw.  And as I oohed and aahed over it you crinkled up your nose and your smile turned to a frown as I handed it back to you.  "But mommy" you said..."you didn't see the inside of the house."  You turned the drawing over and handed it back to me.  It was the inside of the house drawn on the back of the paper.  Your creative brain was already working to see things in a different way.  

You are eleven now, but you're still my little boy!  Old enough to stay home by yourself but not too old to snuggle up with me and tell me about your day.  I love the group of friends you have surrounded yourself with and even when you have experiences with kids who aren't so nice your empathetic reasoning and kindness is wise beyond your years.  

I am so proud of you.  I thank God that he gave you to me.  And I want you to know that I love you for exactly who you are at this very moment and for the young man that you are growing up to be.  You are one of a kind Jack Love and I'm very thankful to call myself your mom.


Sarah Huizenga said...

Wonderful tribute to your son. The letting go is the hardest part, but it so wonderful to watch them grow into who God intends them to be. I hope they never get too old to snuggle. My twenty year old daughter still wants cuddle time went she comes home from college.

Carol said...

What a beautiful tribute. It speaks to every mother's heart! Happy Birthday Jack! You are a lucky kid surrounded by so much love!

AFishGirl said...

Such beautiful writing, Leigh. Happy birthday, Jack!

Jeanne said...

Such a beautiful tribute to a very special young man!

terriporter said...

Leigh, you have spoken to the heart of every mother with this post. We can all remember those first days (years?) when we weren't sure we were doing it right and the wondering how you got so lucky to be the mom of such an incredible child. On the occasion of Jack's birthday, I love that your wrote him a "love letter" to express your feelings. Wouldn't every person love to have something like that from their mother? I hope you print this and save it somewhere for him so he can have it always. Beautiful post, my friend!

La Vie Quotidienne said...


Dotti said...

So beautiful, Leigh! I hope Jack has seen/will see this post and I love Terri's suggestion that you print it for him so he'll have it forever. You've given voice to emotions and insecurities every mother feels/has felt. Happiest of birthdays to your fine young man and I'm going to vote for him for President!

Kim Stevens said...

Yes, every mom relates to all the things you have written here. Doubt, worry, overwhelming love . . . but I can tell you now that my daughter has gone off to her first year of college that the letting go doesn't get easier. Especially when they end up in ER and there is nothing you can do but wait.

kelly said...

oh my goodness beautiful. you've pretty much described the journey that every mother takes. but honestly, just one look at your sweet boy. he is special indeed. happy birthday jack!

heyjudephotography said...

A wonderful tribute to your "little one." Happy Birthday Jack!

susan said...

Beautiful!!! Simply beautiful!

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