Thursday, June 18, 2015

Nine Years Old Is So... So Old

Laaaadies aaaand Gentlemen.

May I present... my NINE year old!
Word has it that next year he turns 10, which means double digits, which means the onset of the preteen years, which means... a lot of things!
For now, I'm ignoring the fact his shoes fit me. That he is only a head shorter than me. That he can outrun me. And that he only has nine more years with us before he's 18 and the plans and directions in life shift drastically.
Earlier this spring, Grady told me he "didn't want a big birthday party because it embarrasses me when lots of people are looking at me." Although I was tempted to remind him this meant less birthday presents, I understood his perspective and we agreed to have just a couple of friends join him for the day.
Two hours of jumping at Sky High - actually, of nonstop dodgeball - and an evening at our house for pizza and cupcakes was just enough to make the birthday boy happy.
There's something unexplainably unique about a firstborn. Don't you agree? He holds a piece of my heart in a way the others don't. Not in a "I love you more" kind of way, but in a "discovering you were joining our family changed the trajectory of my life forever" kind of way.
Grady Lee is a hard worker. He likes getting sweaty and dirty to be a helper. Lifting, pushing, pulling, carrying - he's all physical. He is my go-to helper in so many ways and I know I can depend on his attitude to readily assist.

He's also got a tender heart for his siblings. If Annalyse falls, he's the first one to rush and help her up and give her a piggy back ride. If Jaxton is crying, he's eager to try to distract him with a toy or to pick him up and swing him around. If Micah isn't feeling well, he's quick to ask what game he wants to play or movie he wants to watch.
Year eight was a learning year in so many ways and on so many levels. Understanding behavior. Controlling emotions. Being aware of social interactions. Persisting in difficult school subjects. Responding to coaches. Trusting dad and mom. Interacting with friends. Learning who God is and why his truth matters. And on and on it goes.

Being your mom is a joyride and faith-builder like nothing else. Watching you learn and grow is simultaneously terrifying and exciting. And knowing that God chose me to raise you? Amazing and humbling.

Buddy, I'm looking forward to year nine. And 10, and 11, and every birthday after. But for now, I'm looking forward to the few remaining years when you're still my "little boy" who will rest his head on my shoulder, hug me freely, say "I love you" in front of friends, and call me pretty just cause I have earrings and a necklace on.

I love you!

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