Seven years old. You were the baby of the family before Mary came along, and you’ve transitioned into your new role as “big brother” so well. It’s hard for me to believe that you’ll ever be anything OTHER than my baby. You and I have had an inseparable bond since you were born. Jackson, by contrast, is largely independent We are close, but he ventures out and “does his own thing”. While you love adventure, you are far more cautious and never more than a few steps away from mama.
When I had you take the 5 Love Languages for Kids test recently, it was no surprise to discover that you and I have the same love language – physical touch. You are easily our most affectionate child – always eager to greet and depart with a hug. I can’t tell you how many of those hugs were salve to my grieving heart. Timmy, you have that affect on everyone. There is a joy that hangs over you like a welcome raincloud and it’s infectious. Please, baby – never ever stop hugging mama Those hugs are treasures to me.
Speaking of your love for adventure, at any given moment you can be found looking like this – decked out in costume. Whether it’s in a full suit and tie (because you want to look like Frankie), or full-on superhero mode (I think this particular day, you called yourself Captain Hulk of America), you love to dress up. So much so that every birthday and Christmas usually yields you at least two costumes. It’s so entertaining to watch you pretend, and I pray that you continue to nourish that active imagination of yours for the rest of your life.
I can’t wait to see the plan that God has for your life, Timmy. You invest so deeply into all of your relationships, and that’s so rare these days. Sure, you fight with your siblings just like all of us did, but your brothers and sisters know they can count on you for some good quality time, and at the very least, a good hug (whether they want one or not, haha!). As for Frankie and I – we can count on you in just the same way. You’re not just eager to love, but always eager to help. A common phrase in this house is “that’s Timmy’s job”. Why? Because you’re always the first one to volunteer to help. And you carry out your duties (like checking the nest for eggs, feeding the dog, and as of yesterday – mowing the lawn) with pride and a good attitude. I cannot tell you how much Frankie and I appreciate that about you, buddy.
You asked me a question this morning that sent chills down my spine. “Mama – can I stay up later when I turn 8?”
While my answer was “yes”, I secretly died a little inside. Having you turn 7 is hard enough. Let’s slow it down with all this “turning 8” nonsense, mmkay?
Happy Birthday Tango. We love you!