I wrote one for your brother. It’s appropriate that I should write one for you.
Fifteen. I’m still struggling to wrap my mind around it. Ja, I sound like a broken record, so just zip it!!
It feels like only yesterday when the nurses gave you to me for the first time. I didn’t get to see you when you were still fresh from the oven, coz’ I was still out cold.
Seeing you for the first time was the proudest moment of my life up to then. I had carried you, nurtured you for 9 months. And boy, were those difficult months! Another reason why I vowed never to have another!
You were such a tiny little thing. With the biggest ears I’ve ever seen on a baby! But you were my baby. Ok, I only found out about you when I was three months along, and ja, I was a bit dof, but we were not planning a family. What can I say? *shrugs shoulders*
It was a shock, finding out I was going to have you. But it soon turned to elation. There was never a point where I felt I didn’t want you. Once I’d adjusted to the idea, it was as if it was just meant to be. I also just knew in my heart, that you were a boy.
Things weren’t easy for us then. We’ve told you that. There were times when I wondered what if….but it all worked out as it should. Never ever doubt that we wanted you. Ever.
You were such a happy baby – but only AFTER the colic subsided. Ja, you were a bit of a bugger. Didn’t give me one ounce of rest for the first 6 months of your life! You showed me, alright! After you, I vowed I’d never EVER again. That didn’t last long, did it?
Always a laugh. Always a smile. Way too friendly – you’d go to anyone who wanted to pick you up. And so fat?! You know how fat you were, you saw the pictures!!
I look at you and still see that little boy who had a motor mouth from the minute he could talk. All the things you used to say. You frequently had us in stitches. I knew then you would have a wicked sense of humour – like your mommy (and of course I’d take the credit for that too!!)
Your first full sentence was the words of that petrol ad – “Nou waar gaat hy dan heen?” and you chirped “Seker ’ie te ver ‘ie” After the shock of hearing that from your mouth, I hosed myself laughing. You probably don’t remember that, but I do. Like it was yesterday.
And the day you broke your arm. I was livid, but not with you. 4.5 years old and a broken arm? I remember asking myself “is this what life with this child is going to be like? Constant stress? Ek gaan dit nie survive nie!!” Ja, I overreacted. Sue me! Fortunately, there’s always been more fun and laughter than stress. But you were still a hooligan child!
And the time you got encephalitis. First the doctors thought it was meningitis, but fortunately it wasn’t. I was sick with worry. When they did the spinal tap, I cried with you. You didn’t see coz’ I had to be brave for you. But I did. That was the most terrifying period in my life. I wouldn’t leave your side. I stayed with you until the doctors said you would be ok. You healed well, but I saw the difference afterwards. You were moody, not as carefree as before.
And look at you now. A strapping, intelligent, caring and very handsome young lad. Ok, I am biased, I’m allowed to be!! I feel so proud thinking that we must have done something right with you! You have a head on your shoulders, you don’t rush into things. You have ambition and drive. You have dreams.
You are now much more focussed on your schooling and your future than you were a year ago. We are happy for this. You’ve realised how important your education is. You have evolved from that troubled young boy you were last year. You know it wasn’t easy. Hell, I think you made it as difficult for me as possible!! But we came through it, and look at you now….
Whatever you do, don’t lose sight of your dreams and ambitions. This is what will drive you when you stumble. Keeping your eye on the prize will keep you focussed. If you falter, these dreams will help you to get up, dust yourself off and continue.
Know that we will support you. Even if we may not always agree with what you believe, say or do, if it is something you believe in, we will (grudgingly) leave you to follow your heart. If it is not, well, we argue our point until you see reason!
And believe me, we will say NO when needed! Not because we want to be mean. We’ve lived our lives, we’ve been there, done that, got the children as proof! When we say no, understand that it’s with your best interest at heart. Anyway, you cannot always have things your way, can you?
You will make mistakes. We expect you to learn from these mistakes. Just believe that we will be there to help you pick up the pieces. And understand that you can never be a failure – failure comes only from not trying again.
The path ahead won’t always be easy. Hell, growing up is never easy!! But trust that you can always rely on us to help when needed.
If you’re unsure of something, ask for advice. If you’ve stuffed up, rather tell us. Don’t let us find out from someone else. Hearing it from you will always be first prize. That doesn’t mean we won’t strip your hide, but we’ll help figure it out.
Hell, we’ll probably give you advice even when you’re not asking for it! That’s just how parents are. We specialise in dishing unsolicited advice!
Don’t ever feel that you are alone – we will always be there to help, to advise, to prod – and even shove – you in the right direction!
And I have faith that you will grow into a fine adult. Just stay true to yourself. Remember what you’ve learnt from us (hint: only the good stuff!). Be the best you can be. Don’t ever settle for second best. You deserve only the best.
So, Happy Birthday Sweetheart! Hope you get to celebrate many more. And that you are blessed, that your dreams become reality and that you always live life to the fullest!!
I might not always say it and show it, but I’m damn proud to be your mommy!
One thing: I wish you would leave the girls alone, until you’re at least 30 *winks* but I know I’m unrealistic. A mother can dream too, you know?! I just don’t want you to get too serious about someone early on, because you might just lose focus of your dreams and ambitions. Ask me, I know what I’m talking about!!
And I don’t want to be a granny until I’m 50! Remember that!
© Dizzy, 31 August 2009