To My Son, On His 17th Birthday

9 Feb

Many thanks to my sister Jasmine for this wonderful birthday banner she made for Alex’s surprise lunch party last Sunday at my parents’ home. (In photo, from left to right, are the grandchildren from my side of the family: my niece Arielle, Alphonse, my nephew Sese, and Alex)

Dearest Alex,

The day you were born was one of the best days of our lives. The first time your dad held you, he could not stop kissing you, so enamored was he of his little boy. You were a tiny squirt then, just a smidgen over six pounds, frail and small and absolutely, breathtakingly beautiful. There haven’t been many days as perfect as that day since then, but each day with you has been an opportunity to thank the Lord for the gift we received seventeen years ago.

You are a miracle, Alex. Our family’s miracle. You almost didn’t make it then as a little baby in my womb; the day you were born, you were hardly moving in my tummy anymore and your heart rate was falling fast. But God let you live for us, for this family, because He knew you would give us strength and joy when we most need it. And you do, anak, you do.

I know that these days, it’s hard not to be at odds with each other. Sometimes, you are angry at us and our inability to understand you and your needs. I then remember the times when you were a little boy- when your world revolved around us- and I feel sad that there have been times in the recent past that we have felt a wall standing between us.

Your Papa and I want you to know that we love you. You are our life, Alex, as much as Alphonse is too. We live for both of you. What we try to teach you every day is to live your life to the fullest because we know you are capable of so much more goodness and kindness in you. We know your heart, son, and it is a mighty heart. We have seen your love for your brother, and only a man of innate goodness and strength can love without judgment and with total acceptance the way you do your brother. Use your heart, Alex, and use it well, to guide you in making choices. Choose good over evil, truth over lies, honesty over deceit, love over hate, and you will never go wrong. Choose God always.

I want to tell you that we are proud of you always. When we see you stand tall, we see in you a reflection of all our dreams and our love for each other. I see so much of your dad in you — in the way you knit your brows when you are worried, in your quirky sense of humor (not always funny, haha), even in the way you baby your brother. You don’t know this but when you do something special for anyone of us, Papa and I puff up inside like balloons filled with the helium of happiness.

We pray for you always, too, son. We cover you each day with our prayers for your safety and your wellbeing. And we pray too that you find strength always in the grace of God. We love you, son. God loves you. Remember this when you are hurting, or sad, or disappointed in life. We may not always be here to kiss your hurts away but know that our love for you is eternal, immeasurable, and unconditional.

♥Mama

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13 Responses to “To My Son, On His 17th Birthday”

  1. cynch February 9, 2010 at 1:53 am #

    happy birthday alex! grabe pinks, shed a tear here…overwhelmed by the love you and A have for alex :).

    • Kittymama February 9, 2010 at 8:16 pm #

      Thank you, Cynch. I passed on the message to Alex and he sends you his thanks too. 🙂

  2. NinJas! February 9, 2010 at 2:27 am #

    beautiful 😀

    • Kittymama February 9, 2010 at 10:56 pm #

      Grazie, sister. Thank you for the effort and time you put into the banner too. It’s absolutely beautiful!

  3. julie February 9, 2010 at 7:17 am #

    awww, so sweet (siyempre naiyak ako)

    happy birthday Alex, I wish you all the best 🙂

    • Kittymama February 9, 2010 at 10:57 pm #

      Thanks, T. Julie! Seems only yesterday when he celebrated his fourth birthday with you and his classmates; now, he’s a year shy of adulthood! Sigh.

  4. Otoosaneko February 9, 2010 at 9:08 am #

    Dearest Alex,

    I’ve just read your Mama’s masterpiece, and I don’t believe I can add anything of substance to what she has already said. Do allow me to note, though, that if there’s anything her words underscore, it’s the strength of our conviction in your potential to succeed. If we are hard on you, and, perhaps, too hard from your perspective, it’s simply because we know the real you – the extremely talented, kind, compassionate , thoughtful, caring you that once in a while gets overwhelmed by the burdens you carry.

    I’m proud of you, son. Very, very proud of you. And why shouldn’t I be, when you came from your Mama’s womb as the essence of the overwhelming love we had – and will always have – for each other? Know that I will always be on your side no matter the circumstance. And whenever you are sad, remember that I love you without condition, just as your Mama does. That’s the least we can do to thank God for giving us the greatest of gifts, for giving us you.

    Papa

    • Kittymama February 9, 2010 at 11:00 pm #

      Honey, stop making me cry, ha? I love you and I always will. ♥

  5. Manggy February 9, 2010 at 1:39 pm #

    Oh shoot, Kittymama, you have me all verklempt here too. I’m sure Alex always feels the love!

    • Kittymama February 9, 2010 at 10:58 pm #

      Thanks, Mark! I hope he really does. 🙂 Who knew raising teenagers could be so hard? Heehee!

  6. cynch February 9, 2010 at 10:58 pm #

    kittymama…A made me shed more tears…for a man to put into words such emotion…huhuhuhu :).

  7. ms firefly February 15, 2010 at 5:31 pm #

    happy belated birthday Alex!

    *sniff* i am so touched, it’s very special!

  8. Gifts for Dads February 20, 2010 at 3:23 am #

    Great Post! I personally really appreciate your content. This is a great website. I will make sure that I stop back again!.

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