Jul 17, 2012

Happy Birthday Dano...

July 18th...  my youngest and only son turns 19.
We've celebrated wonderful, week long birthdays with the nino. Summer birthdays afford that. 
One year we were at the Jersey Shore, a few years we celebrated with my parents at the beach in Florida. 
We spent one in Alaska and on his 13th birthday he experienced his first deep sea dive in the ocean. 
He found a pirate knife. 
 Maybe it was a steak knife or fishing knife.

These trips were not in celebration of his birthday, though for a time he may have thought that. It may have something to do with his dad calling him the Prince.
They were summer trips and when your b-day is smack dab in the middle of summer, well, you usually get a party out of it.

This year he is celebrating in Cairn, Australia, at the Great Barrier Reef. 
He isn't with his family...
 on second thought... maybe he is with some family.
He is with college friends.
I hope he has the best day ever.
By the looks of this picture, he is doing fine... even though he is playing the straight man for once. 
Photo: IMG_4537
I will be a little sad.  Maybe I will only be sad now, as I write this...
Sad that I have not heard his voice in thirty days and will not be able to wish him a happy birthday.
It's a mom thing.

He will arrive back in Nashville on Saturday so I sent the appropriate 19 yr old gifts to his sisters house. Money you may ask. Nope. Money doesn't float Dans boat. 

I sent him a whoopee cushion, a plastic hipster mustache and a couple books on running. 
He is going to be ecstatic. 
Trust me on this.
Wait, there were two V necks in the box too. Not deep V's.
They are still cool, right?

I couldn't send him a cake... so I asked his sis to make him a nice chocolate cake when he gets back. 
She is a good sister. She will probably take him out for a fancy dinner and suggest they use mom and dads card. "It is what they would want", they 

will insist.

He sent me a message from Australia saying he wanted to buy a harmonica or didgeridoo... something you make funny noises with. I told him to buy it as part of his birthday gift. 
He said that would defeat the purpose of a birthday gift. 
I think he meant he likes surprises. He always has. 
His love language is definitely attention... however or wherever that fits in. 
He isn't so good at giving it, but boy howdy he likes to be the center of it.
Hopefully, by the time he finds the girl of his dreams he will have figured out how to be the bearer and not just receiver.
It won't be because I haven't tried. 

There are some observations I have made about my boy over the years so if you will indulge me for a few more minutes.
He is a fine young man. Not perfect .... in any way, but a work in progress.

He has a dad who has been a Godly example and other men he has respected who have shown him what it means to be a man.
Sometimes it means swinging from a tree...
Photo: Oh to be young and swing from trees
He has learned true friendship by the ones who let him down in his younger years.
He chooses well.
He loves his friends. 
His heart hurts when others hurt.

As a mom, you hurt when your child hurts and sometimes I wanted to fix things.
I am glad we didn't. 
I am thankful for the hard times Dan experienced. 
Character grows.

He has been a joy to parent (mostly)
He was the most beautiful boy I had ever seen. Deep dark eyes and blond hair. I tell him he was the crankiest kid I had ever known too.
Not even kidding here.

Over the years we watched him swim, play basketball, baseball, soccer, track, cross country and wrestling.
He found a love for music, drama and even thinks he can dance.
Let's face it, Dan wants to do it all...
 Good for him.

He always worked hard and never quit.
That work ethic has allowed him to participate in college sports and push himself to levels he thought impossible when in High School.

He is a young man, finding his way. He seeks direction from wise council and doesn't look for others to blame... anymore. :)  

I remember when the boy was little and we were watching Billy Graham on TV. Dan turned to me and said, "Mom, I want to give my heart to Jesus," and that's what he did.
I believe Dan wants to live a life that matters, for Christ.

I will continue to watch his journey and always be grateful for the little blonde boy that was given to me for safe keeping.

Happy Birthday Dan The Man
Your mama loves you.

Keep living for Christ, son.
Photo: Can you believe this little guy will be 19 tomorrow?  http://instagr.am/p/NMCvv8JrLl/

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