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Sweet Sixteen Already

July 3, 2014

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAIt doesn’t seem possible. I know the date. I see time move on but it doesn’t seem possible.

Sixteen years ago, Flagstaff Arizona, Helen was joking she was going to wait until the 4th to have him with fireworks. The third he decided he wasn’t waiting.

I recently put up on Amazon an ebook of 150 Things to Do Before Graduation. The dollar or so we might be fortunate enough to get will help, but more than that maybe it will help others challenge and raise kids.

As Helen said several years later “we have messed up much but did good with Connor, somehow.” We’d stayed in touch after I left Flagstaff. I knew the stories, concerns, issues and good things.

And it still doesn’t seem like 16 years ago. He’s often mistaken for being older than he is, due to life experiences, including losing his mom at 12 and coming here, away from everything he’d known. There was stability but challenges too. There’s been tears, “that’s not fair!” and learning to navigate beyond his years.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAThe photo to the left is before he came – at the hospital while visiting his mom when I was out there. Much has changed, and sometimes I wondered why things happen the way they do.

As much as he thinks I pick on him sometimes, he is smart, funny, thoughtful, a little careless, with a sarcastic streak of humor that he comes by honestly. He’s headed towards being the kind of neighbor almost anyone would like to have. The kind of man that a girl better appreciate (or else!), and although there is a lot to experience still, he’s made a heck of a run on those 150 things.

He’s gotten to drive a little, and earlier this week went up in a small plane with an instructor to get a taste of flying, which he’s wanted to do for a long time. He never passes a veteran with a hat or shirt on without shaking their hand and thanking them for their service – anywhere. He wants to be a Navy Seal, or maybe a paramedic/fireman. No matter what career choice, I know his mom would be proud of who he’s becoming.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERASome meet him and think he’s 18, 19 or even 21. Some don’t believe his real age. We still have some memories to make. Happy birthday Connor. Love you always. Take notes…you’re gonna miss this one day. Enjoy your day.

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