To my 15 year old,

I can’t seem to get this right today. I keep typing and back spacing and typing and backspacing. This morning I dragged myself out of bed (which has been especially hard this week with this sinus infection) to give you a hug and wish you a happy birthday before you left for school. You took my hug and hugged me back, which I am thankful has never been an issue for you except maybe for a little while in the pre-teen years. I told you happy birthday. You told me that you are halfway to thirty. Fact. You are now halfway to thirty and every day until then you will be less than halfway to thirty. Since the day you were born you have been growing and changing every day. From the baby who used to play with my hair until you fell asleep to the curious toddler who crawled in the cabinets and drawers to the elementary aged boy who could pogo stick on a stage while solving a Rubik’s cube to the middle schooler who got a pandemic middle school experience and spent his free time making a huge rubber band ball to the 15-year-old who stands before me today. I look at you and see this handsome, young man, but then I look around this house and I see pictures of the past and remember that little boy that you used to be, and I wonder how we got here to 15. Life is a funny thing, isn’t it? It’s like 16 years ago, I wasn’t a mom, and then 15 years ago you came into the world, and I can barely remember my life before you. Nothing has been the same since. Similarly, for you, 15 years ago, you were just a baby, and now you are almost an adult. I’m curious to see how the next 15 years unfold. I can’t wait to see what you will do with the gifts that God has given you. You are so blessed. And we are so blessed to have had front row seats for the past 15 years. Whatever you do in the next 15, I’ll be in my front row seat, tissues in hand, now, forever and always your biggest fan.