I always write about running, the kind you do outside with running shoes to stay in shape. I run here and there, in races and in the morning. I run everywhere. That person right there is my youngest son James. He’s always the kid who got toted around from field to field and and did what he was told. He is funny and sarcastic like me. Until today I always saw him as the little boy on the dock catching fish. We in fact still fish together and I have a marvelous time catching seaweed while he catches fish after fish not even using the rod the fishing line is attached to. Hand fishing he calls it and he’s really good at it. Until today I saw the little kid who has a messy room and likes to watch cartoons and shows about fishing and ride his bike. Until today he was just my little Jimmy James who always makes me laugh. Today was his Junior prom and I felt this little twinge of pain in my chest as I took pictures of someone who just isn’t little any more. He’s a 6’3″ oh-so-handsome young man who has one year left as a minor before going to college. Whoa. That is sort of sobering to me because people I know are just having their babies and mine is just about grown. There’s a sadness in the joy there somewhere all mashed together messing with my head. My beautiful baby boy is now one of two of the most handsome young men I have ever known. He’s wonderful to know and god is that kid so smart and I love him so very much. He’s growing up and as I watch him with his date and smiling and talking with his friends in an awkward prom kind of way with a million pictures being taken by all the crazy parents I feel like I’m running out of time. If I wasn’t dreading my kids leaving before I am now but that’s life and he’s got everything to look forward to in the world. I still see a 7 year old with double casts when I look at him, that little beautiful boy with the floppy right ear that we smile about. I see the kid that idolizes his brother and always just wanted to be like him when he grew up. He’s grown up before my eyes but I think that the fast forward button is stuck because I can’t stop time now. Before it was all about how much we had to do and how busy we are and now I find myself counting the moments I can spend with him to store them up so when he’s off making his life, I can open the jar up for a dose of these days. Sentimental I guess or maybe it’s because he’s my last child or both. He’s grown up and I am so very proud of him. I don’t remember exactly when he arrived at this place but it feels like I missed a bunch of years or something! It sucks getting old but I wouldn’t change it or him for the world. He and my older son and daughter amaze me every day and teach me to appreciate every day for all it can give me. James has taught me the most about perseverance, the power of laughter, having tough skin and the journey to finding oneself.
I love you James and I am so lucky that God gave you to me to love and enjoy and learn from!