Dear Drew: I will never forget the blissful couple of days I spent in the hospital with you after you were born. And it wasn’t just because of the plate of warm cookies Ganelle brought me. I hardly knew you then, and as all mothers do, I wondered what kind of a kid you would be. At that point I didn’t know the critical role that lightsabers would play in your life. So critical that you felt it necessary to wear pants over your swimsuit to swim lessons because your swimsuit didn’t have a belt, and then WHERE WOULD YOU POSSIBLY BE ABLE TO HANG YOUR LIGHTSABER? I didn’t know that learning to swim would make you feel “even more like a Jedi, because Jedis don’t use floaties or noodles.” Your desire for good to conquer evil was also evident one day when Samantha began to make siren noises, and you stopped mid-sentence to shout, “I gotta go save the world!”
I didn’t know that you would be so capable of soaking in simple pleasures of life. But I witnessed it once when we were riding our bikes together, just the two of us, and you sensed it by asking, “Is this something special that we’re doing?” I’d see more evidence later when I purchased you an ice cream on a hot, summer day and we drove down the road with the windows down. You let out a huge sigh as your head relaxed against the seat and you declared, “Ahhh, I just LOVE my life.”
I didn’t know you would care so much about other people, but a few weeks ago when the community was collecting loose change for a boy in need in our neighborhood, you went up to your room and got every penny, nickel, dime and quarter from your own personal stash and turned it over to him. When I told you that in lieu of a party this year I would give you a $50 shopping spree at any store you wanted, your first thought was to spend thirty of those dollars on a friend who really wanted a certain game for his Nintendo. You came to your senses when we went to the store and you saw all the shiny, new lightsabers, but still.
I positively had no idea how much bodily functions would command your attention. Who knew that you would glean motivation from the Old Testament when potty training as you declared, “Moses doesn’t wear a pull-up”? Or that when your slurpee began to drip from the straw onto the couch you would laugh because, “it was going pee”? Or that my saying the word “butt” could make you laugh in the middle of a homework crisis?
I surely had no clue then how much you would come to love all things camouflage, or that you would still beg to snuggle with me every once in a while, or that bad dreams would still urge you to my side of the bed in the middle of the night.
I guess that’s the beauty of the last eight years, is that I can sit here and say that if I knew then what I know now, I would do it all over again.
Happy Birthday buddy.