To my sweet son, William on the eve of your 10th birthday,
Tomorrow, you will be 10! I’ve had a lot on my mind that I wanted to tell you. So, here goes…
Ten years ago today, I went to Grammy & Grandpap’s house for an impromptu Bojanlges breakfast before Uncle Nick headed back to Florida. I wasn’t feeling so well, but couldn’t put my finger on why. The rest of the day was a pretty normal Saturday. That is until your Dad and I went to REI to cash in his gift cards from his birthday a few days before. I was standing there waiting for him to decide on a knife and I felt a pretty intense pain. I figured I was just tired (you were pretty heavy in my belly by then) and went to wait in the car. Later, it was determined that I was in labor, despite being told just a few days prior that you weren’t coming out anytime soon. Of course, my little adventurer would begin his entrance to the world in REI. I labored for 18 hours and eventually got to meet you. The Doctor who delivered you said that you were just sitting there. Like in a meditation pose – with your little legs folded criss cross applesauce. You didn’t cry and you didn’t move. You were just this peaceful little soul who entered quietly and dramatically into this world. After some intense moments, you took your first screaming breath. I heard it from the other room where they had taken you. You sounded like a little bird. The respiratory therapist who got you breathing again—her name was Destiny. I believe it was her destiny to be there that morning. Your Dad carried you over to me, and I looked in your eyes. Your cry quieted as soon as your tiny body touched my cheek. That moment changed my life. I was finally a mother. The best, most rewarding, most challenging title I will ever hold.
That first year was tough. I can’t lie about that. You were colicky. You were sick – a lot. You cried– a lot. Between the congenital hypothyroidism and the colic and me trying to figure out how to be a mom, it was a bit of a mess. Then, you almost left us when you were 5 months old. You know the story because you have heard it before. From very early on, though, you have shown us a connection to your spirituality and your faith that many of us can only dream of. God is working through you, my son. Know and trust that, always.
You have endured a lot in your 10 years here. I won’t go into all of that because that is your story to tell, not mine. I believe when you do share it, it will be more powerful than you can even imagine. What I will say is that time is flying by. I really cannot believe that you turn 10 tomorrow. 10 is such a magical age, I think. No longer a little boy, but not yet a teenager. You have done so much in your ten years…more than I have in my almost 40. Gosh, what you have taught me in these last 10 years. You inspire me daily. No matter what the challenge, you may complain for a moment, but then you put your head down and you do the work. I love how willing you are to try anything from new foods to new sports. I admire how adventurous you are. I try so hard to nurture, guide and support you without holding you back. I want you to be a child for as long as you can, but at the same time, I want to help you spread your wings because I know that is your destiny. God has shown that to us already.
This next decade will see you to 20. You’ll be a man. I pray that as you grow into a man, you stay the kind, sweet, empathetic person that you are today. I pray that you remain healthy. I pray that you follow your heart and remain focused on your goals. I pray you hold your head high and stay at the hard stuff, because rewards will come. I pray that God continues to guide Dad and me as we do our best to be the parents you deserve. I pray that one day when I’m not around you will read this and you will know what I believe is possible in the next 10, 20 and 30 years of your life.
So, when you wake up tomorrow morning, you’ll be 10! Happy 10th Birthday, my Sweet William. You are a wonderful friend, brother, son, grandson, nephew, Scout…the list could go on and on. Keep being you, Doodlebug, because you are awesome. I simply cannot wait to see what is in store for you during your next decade.
Love always, Mom
By Blythe Clifford