He is like a tree planted by streams of water, which yields its fruit in season and whose leaf does not whither. Whatever he does prospers. Psalm 1:3
My dear son,
A champion. A fighter. Persistent. You were all of these the day you were born. Daddy and I wanted to be surprised on Delivery Day, so we never found out if you were a boy or a girl. It was practically unheard of in those days to keep the gender a secret so while I labored, nurses popped in and out of our room, casting bets on whether or not I would birth another daughter or a firstborn son.
I progressed quickly and the moment of truth—boy or girl—crept closer with every ripple of pain across my belly until it was time to bear down and push with my might. Everything was fine at first. The doctor was called in and the laboring room was transformed into a delivery station. The counting between breathing began. 1-2-3, push. Breathe. 1-2-3, push. Breathe. Almost here.
The nurses cheered as your head crowned and we saw a headful of hair. Just a couple more pushes. I glanced up just in time to see a strange look cross my doctor’s face. No one was looking at me anymore and I watched them silently nod. Someone murmured dystocia and I groaned. Not again. Memories of my last delivery returned, image after image of nurses shoving down on my stomach as the doctor grabbed your sister’s head, yanking her out. She came out but not easily.
Looked like you were following in her footsteps.
Thankfully, within minutes you were out and a roar from the delivery staff went up. It’s a boy!
Tears streamed down my face. A boy! Our first son!
Since that day, I’ve watched you grow from a sweet, funny baby into a strong, helpful, loving boy. You have a soft spot for Mama, making sure she’s taken care of. You are Daddy’s shadow, tagging along to work with him and learning to be a great farmer. You lead your brothers and (mostly) help them make good choices. You aggravate your sisters one minute then beg them to read you a story the next minute. Living life with you is never boring.
Yesterday you were six. Raising a six-year-old boy taught me to live life fuller, to let go of those things we cling so tightly to (namely, the crystal vase we received for our wedding or my favorite mug for hot tea or really anything that can be broken), to laugh at everything—even the 49 spills across the kitchen floor every week.
I learned that six is the magic number when it comes to a boy beginning the road to manhood. Chores became part of your everyday routine from taking out the trash to feeding the animals. You help Daddy with the most unpleasant farm chores and Mama with your laundry. You even changed the twins’ diapers a time or two! Playtime is always near, but only after the work is finished!
Today you are seven. Being seven means learning a whole new set of skills and challenges but it’ll be an adventure we seek together. I’m proud of the man you’re becoming—a warrior for God—and I am honored to be your mom. So here’s to seven years old and living life fully in Christ this year. I’m looking forward to living out more adventures with you.
I love you,