To My Son on His 10th Birthday

February 23rd, 2016
Aedan in Cub Scout uniform

Dear Aedan,

Today you are ten years old – a whole decade. In many ways, this hardly feels possible – weren’t you just born yesterday? But in other ways, it seems inevitable that we would be here today, celebrating your ten years of life. Most of all, it feels strange and unfathomable that I am the mother of a ten-year-old. As I pay closer attention to your aging, I sometimes forget my own.

Aedan smirking

Part of me wants to tell you to stop growing right now, right this instant – do not get any older. I can no longer pick you up and carry you with ease. You no longer want me to kiss you goodbye every morning when we part. You sometimes make decisions that surprise me because your thought process has become your own and not just an extension of mine. So much of this can be hard for me to experience, even though I know it is part of growing up, part of you becoming your own man.

Aedan dressed as Wolverine

Another part of me enjoys watching you grow so much – how is it possible that from me came this boy? This independent, remarkable boy? You teach me so much every day with your questions, with your thoughts, with your behaviors. I don’t always learn the lesson I’m expecting to learn, but I almost always learn.

You bring out the best in me, and you also bring out the worst in me because I love you with all of me.

Aedan in Boy Scout uniform and Santa hatI want to say that I am sorry – for all the times you have seen me at my worst, for all the times when I have not been well enough to put you first. It pains me more than I can ever express that there have been times when I could not be a mom because of illness. But I also want you to recognize that your mom is a human being, and it’s okay for her to struggle sometimes – hopefully should you have to fight these same illnesses, I can be an example for you that it’s possible. It’s not always pretty, but it’s possible.

Aedan and Sean cheering on the RoyalsI also want to tell you that having you made me love your dad even more than I already did. Now I also love him not just as my partner in life but as your father. I hope that one day – if you do not recognize it already – you will see how incredible he is and understand what he’s given you by being such a great dad.

I will love you always and no matter what. This doesn’t mean I will love everything you do, but I will always and forever love you, ten years old or fifty. You are the most amazing thing about my life, and even if I’m not always there with you, I hope that I will always be in your heart.



Happy birthday, my sweet, incredible, amazing boy. May the next ten years be as wonderful as the first ten.


Aedan in 3D glasses