Another year has come and gone. It is bittersweet for me because your years at home are approaching an end. Each day that passes brings the day you'll leave home a little closer, and I want to hold onto each day just a bit longer.
How well I remember the day you were born. It was a hard labor. The doctor sat beside me watching the monitor for many of the hours we were at the hospital. I didn't realize this was unusual. I also didn't know that there wasn't normally extra staff standing by in the room. You were my first baby and I didn't know what to expect. After you were born, I found out they had been prepared to do a C-section stat because your heart rate was dropping dangerously low during the contractions. We were grateful to God that you arrived safely.
You were my biggest baby, weighing in at eight pounds even. You were almost 23 inches long and your feet started out at a size 2. Rapidly gaining weight, you never settled for doing anything in a small way. The record for my fattest baby also was yours. At four months of age, you were already 18 pounds. At a year you were 26 pounds. Now you are 6 foot 2 inches, and you still do everything in a big way. (Well, maybe not the weight anymore.)
It has been my delight watching you excel at the things you work at. I once taught you, but now you teach me things about computers, math, and science. You work hard and diligently at whatever you do. It's your big heart full of love for the Lord that makes me the most proud though. As I watch you faithfully read your Bible, serve in the church, and love your siblings, I'm proud of the young man you have become. You have chosen to let God work in your life, and I stand amazed at what He is doing. I look forward to seeing what God's plan is for your life. I know He will use you to accomplish His work. So, although in one breath I want to hold back the days, in the next breath I anticipate the days ahead. You are ready to fly, and I'm prepared to step back and watch you go.
Happy 17th Birthday!