Today, C., my oldest son, turns 14.
I know that 13 is supposed to be a “milestone year” — officially becoming a teenager, etc. But for some reason, as I write this post, 14 feels very meaningful. After all, it’s not as if I’m just becoming the mom of a teen. We are firmly entrenched in the teen years. Time is flying — more quickly each year. C. is growing into a young man right in front of me.
He asked me yesterday if the first year of his “teenager-hood” had been so bad. He’d heard horror stories about teens for years and when he was younger, he assured Chad and me that he wasn’t going to be “that kind of teen.” Though we never got that promise in writing, I have to admit, this first year wasn’t bad. Not bad at all.
We talk about big things, important things, heavy things. And though we — like all parents and kids — sometimes struggle to communicate well, we work at it. The other night, he told me that he felt we’d really had a good talk. And I agreed.
He’s becoming more and more responsible. He was in charge of mowing the lawn this past summer. He handles all the usual chores without complaint — taking out the garbage, helping with dishes, even babysitting his little brother on occasion.
He puts up with me and my silliness…with a minimum of eye-rolling. Even when I blast Toby Mac in the car and do disco moves while stopped at a stop sign. (And yes, I did just that recently. He just smiled and said he wondered what the passers-by were thinking.)
He loves to read, he’s a compiler of lists and data, he’s fascinated by old pictures and family history. He makes us laugh (or groan) with his corny jokes, he watches out for his Mom, he makes sure his little brother gets into school okay every morning.
He is seeking after God. And that, truly, is the most important thing, the thing that most warms my heart and makes me smile.
I love you very much, C. Happy 14th Birthday!