Dear Little Middle,
Happy 10th birthday to my little man! And what a little man you are indeed! You have grown and changed so much this year...it makes my head spin to look back! All the while, you give us great reason to look ahead. Dad and I are SO unbelievably proud of you.
This year was finally the year that you started to outgrow your Lego mania. For five+ years, I never thought you would want to do anything else as much as build Lego sets. Those nasty little blocks have nearly taken my foot off more times than I can count during late-night bedtime checks! And yet your love affair with Legos persisted. It's what you asked for for birthdays and Christmases. It's what you spent your saved-up dollars on at Target and how you spent long hours sitting in the game room. Do I think you are completely over your Lego love? No way. But the good news is you've passed it on to your little brother...a legacy not lost.
This summer you experienced one of your first heartaches when your best friend moved away. M had been your best buddy for two years. You guys did everything together--games, swimming, running between each other's houses--and it broke your heart for him to leave. To tell the truth, it broke mine, too. You were a little lost this summer, but you have slowly found your way again. There will never be another M, but you are learning to spend time with other friends and still have fun. Did I tell you that I'm really proud of you?
In the fall you started 4th grade. 4th grade?!? How is that possible?!? It took little work on my part to convince the powers that be at school that you
deserved needed to be with the same amazing teacher that Goliath had. And, boy, am I glad I did!!! You, even more than your older brother, have shown me the crazy-good perks of having a teacher who is also your friend. Just yesterday morning, you were freaking out a little bit about the did I?/did I not have math homework over the weekend? question. I was able to text Mrs. C and ask her, thereby diverting a crisis. It pays to be friends with your kid's teacher!
You do well in school, although you would obviously rather be spending your time doing something outside the classroom. You consistently perform better in ELA/spelling/grammar than you do in math & science. Your brain is wired like your mama's, and seemingly no amount of patient coaxing by Mrs. C is going to change that! You like weird science experiments, though. We could mix baking soda and vinegar together every day of the week and you would never tire of it. The messier, the better!
Speaking of school, you got a great gift this year! Our school district is on the technology bandwagon, and is investing in iPads for every student. 4th grade was on the first deployment list this year. For WEEKS, all I heard was, "When I get my iPad, I will __________" and " I will download ____________ app when I get my iPad." And then....the day was HERE! I had to go to school and stand in a crazy line--not at all too much to ask of a mom with the happiest son on the planet! You love that thing! You have become very proficient at using it, and it's been more than one occasion that I've needed to ask you an Apple question. We laid down rules early on, and you are near-perfect at obeying them. Thank you for not being a technological nightmare kid.
The Year You Were Nine has been a year with joys of its own, but also plenty of sadness. Just recently we had the very worst family meeting that you could ever imagine: the one where we shared the news that I am not going to get better from The Cancer. That news was met by a staggering silence on your part. No crying, no yelling, no nothing...just an awful, dreadful silence. I don't blame you one little bit. Since that day you have actually been a little more hands-on. You have hugs a'plenty when I need one. You are almost always happy to come down and sit for a spell to catch a show on Disney Channel or to do math (ugh) homework in my company. I don't really care what it is, as long as I get to be with you.
Little Middle, you have always been my happy-go-lucky, laid-back son. You easily have a smile on your face and you laugh fast and loud. I think you are one of the best ideas that God ever had! I wish so much that I had been able to give you different news on that night, or at least tell you that we are in the middle of a bad dream from which we will surely wake up very soon. Neither one of those is true, though. It seems that our family's bad dream can't be stopped. I want it to be different for you. It appears, though, that God has a plan for you that is opposite of the one I would have written. I don't understand it, but I choose to trust Him, and I pray every day that you will, too. Remember, sweet love: We serve a big God who loves us and is always in control. One of the ways I know that is because that same God gave you to me! I didn't deserve the happy, calm baby that I met at the hospital on that beautiful spring afternoon. All I knew was that God had chosen us to be together. And I'm so glad that He did! I have loved every single day I've gotten to spend with you. No matter how many days we have left to be together, I will make the most out of them. You are precious to me, little man. Never, ever wonder if your mom loves you...because she does.
With my whole heart,