Friday, August 31, 2012

A Farewell to Winter... and a little bit more

Winter comes and goes within a set of bookends, in this house.

June the 1st is my youngest son's birthday, while August 31st belongs to my eldest son. Two birthdays, either end of winter, like a pair of strong book ends, matched yet with their individual boyish charms.

Winter in Sovereign Hill - Ballarat, Victoria
So we celebrate today as my big boys turns 18. We look back on more than this year's winter, but eighteen years worth of cold weather birthdays and fun. 

Days of dirty football clothes and muddy shoes. Parties on the local sports oval in the rain, where boys gladly chased whatever balls we threw at them. Afternoons of chocolate pudding to warm bellies after school, and feather quilts - bought to remedy the shivers in gangly legs almost as long as the bed themselves.

And we look forward to the start of spring. For this birthday boy, it will bring his last term of high school. Many last days will fill the weeks to come, as this season of childhood ends for him... and me. 

I may cry if I start to list them here. So I'll duck the tears and save my handkerchief for when those last days hit me.

It pains me to think there's only so much left to squeeze in, on an already crammed shelf of adventures. That winter after winter has come and melted away eighteen times since I first held him, and I'm about to see the last spine of childhood mischief and drama slip in beside the rest.

Until I consider the shelf God's placed just above the one we've filled. Empty and shiny... with nothing but space for volumes of Tom's life and the stories he'll write. 

So my mother's heart warms and makes plans to embrace new beginnings. To not be too sad at the passing of time, but celebrate a new season and all it will bring. 

Still, there's always room for a few tears... right? Discreet and well mopped, so as not to horrify the child too much. Because a part of me will always think of him as the happy boy who tunnelled his way to adventure at every opportunity. And every story needs a great adventure.


Are you a sook (Aussie for crybaby) like me. Do you find it bittersweet when your children reach milestones?


Happy Birthday Tommy-Boy. 
I can't wait to see how God transforms you 
into a man after His own Heart.