“Legends are born in November.” ~ Anonymous
I learned this very lesson during November of 1996. Yes, twenty years ago I became a mom… for the first time I might add. In the days before Joshua was born I was scared, excited and completely unaware how much my life was about to change. Sure I knew life was never going to be the same again but I never dreamed how infinitely it was about to. I knew what I’d been told by other moms. You know the old no sleeping, "don’t do that, but do this" speeches. I was ready for all that, but what I wasn’t fully prepared for was the ache I felt inside my heart. I had no clue the unbearable yet beautiful pain I’d feel loving my child more than myself. How do you fully explain how a child changes you? I don’t know if anyone can really except to say your lives are turned upside down, changed and completely different within seconds. From the very moment we first heard Joshua’s newborn cries Johnny and I knew our lives would be forever altered. We weren’t simply Johnny and Christina any longer; we were Johnny, Christina and Joshua.
Sure our sleepless nights would eventually end, replaced by wonderful blissful rest; after all being tired was only temporary. The days of waking up to not just one baby but two in our bed would become a sweet memory. Wiping bottoms and split milk up would fade along with the days of play dates and naps. See the time we have with our babies can never be given back, or replaced. Memories can only be remembered once time has passed us by. Robert Rodriguez says it so well, “I wish I could freeze time or go back in time and watch my kids grow up all over again because it is just going by too fast.” I think this is how all parents must feel at some point. Johnny and I talk often about this, how we’d give anything to just have one day with our boys, back when they were little, dependent on us and eager to climb into our laps. The truth however hard, is we can’t turn back time. And that’s why celebrating life’s big and small moments are so important.
It’s hard for me to believe our first born is now 20 years old. Seriously where has the time gone? How did life pass by so quickly? And doesn’t he know he’s making us old? Kidding aside, time stops for no one and this is exactly the reason we must live in the moment, loving and forgiving one another. Our time here is short, no one is guaranteed tomorrow. We have to learn to appreciate the time we have, the memories we make celebrating each milestone as if it’s our last. I look back on the last 20 years with thankfulness. I honestly can’t believe we’re celebrating two decades of being parents, definitely learning by trial and error, along the way but here no less. So how do you celebrate 20 years and two decades of life? Well you do exactly as the birthday boy asks you to, by chilling. And that’s exactly how we spent Joshua’s birthday weekend, relaxing and chilling together as a family. From flounder fishing down in Galveston off the rocks, grabbing a burger at the Spot, to making biscuits and gravy for breakfast, seeing Dr. Strange, eating one of the biggest and best country fried steaks in Texas, meeting our new puppy, helping a friend out, making a cake and eating it too, to having his friends over, playing video games,skateboarding, watching hockey and finally eating the fish we caught with all the fixin’s, Relaxed and chilled yep that's exactly how we spent our weekend. Honestly, this is what life is about, everyday life wrapped up in small, amazing, perfectly imperfect moments spent together.
Life Lesson # 96 ~ little boys are made of bent halos, devilish grins, dirty faces and lots of love and hugs. And every moment of it is a spectacular gift not to be taken for granted. Johnny and I have been blessed not just by one but by two precious boys, both with bent halos and devilish grins. Together, they’ve brought unfathomable joy and happiness into our lives. I am often reminded of how blessed we really are when I think back, knowing having children was not supposed to be in the cards so to speak. But God had a different plan and it started with the birth of our first born son Joshua way back in November of 1996. In my book he is a legend, a hero, a child entrusted to us by a gracious God who knew far better than we did. Genesis 33:5 is a perfect example of His grace in our lives, “Who are these people here with you?” “The children God has graciously given me, sir,” Jacob answered. And so we celebrate Joshua, his life, the memories we’ve made so far and the possibilities yet to come. I cannot express how proud we are of Joshua, his accomplishments and his potential. He’s a good man, flaws, imperfections yes, but he’s also a man of character, determination and greatness. It’s been said of sons, “You’re my baby, my headache, my love, my smile, my frown, my strength, my weakness, my everything…you’re my son.” And you are our everything Joshua.
You Joshua are my first born. You're all grown up, a man, not a boy anymore. You’re 20 for goodness gracious sake! You're ready to make your own way, to be your own man and to set the world on fire. So happy, happy birthday baby boy. We love you so much. Dad and I are so proud of you, the man you're becoming and the places we know you’re on your way to. As your mama, I pray you’ll always remember how much I love you. I hope you carry your childhood home in your heart, as a place of imperfect but unconditional love. I honestly had no clue the day you were born and placed into my arms just how much my life would irreversibly change for the better. You my baby boy have changed my life forever. I know I'm far from perfect, I’ve definitely failed many times. The truth is I was learning with you, right alongside of you all along. Til this very day I still hold this truth of Ruth Graham's close to my heart, “As a mother my job is to take care of the possible and trust God with the Impossible.” Joshua, I believe in you baby. And I know without a doubt, as sure as the sun will rise tomorrow, God's got you in His hands.… bent halo, devilish grin and all.