HAPPY BIRTHDAY, KALEB!!
You're 6 today, a little boy with a beaming smile. It hasn't been an easy year for you, what with your parents separating, moving out of the only house you've known, being away from Me when once We were always together and dealing with the realities of school.
Your mom and I have dealt with the stress to the best of Our abilities, often shielding you from the worst moments. At times, We've opened up and told you what We feel and at least in My case, I have always answered your questions honestly. I'm sure your mom has, too, but I can't vouch for anyone else.
You've noticed this. You've noticed how people won't tell you the truth and you've become something of a walking polygraph. You've also noticed how different people can be, and rather than becoming frightened by it, you've become a bit of a scientist, questioning, observing and remembering. Good choices, Kaleb. You'll go far with these new habits.
Despite the tension and changes, you keep growing. You have your moments of sadness and there are times when you face problems that don't have easy solutions. But you keep going, you try something different, or you adjust your attitude so that it no longer bothers you as much. I wish I'd learned all that as early as you did.
You have a sense of time now, of months and years stretching ahead that you can almost visualize. You've gone from accumulating money in a piggy bank to counting it and comparing what you have to what you want. (That your mom and I don't let you buy everything you want is still a sore point with you...) You seek out books as often as you look for toys and you bounce between sports and games as much as I do. Let's hear it for Nature and Nurture!
You still don't quite understand My work, but you ask Me about it and keep track of My activities quite well. I used to introduce you as My "Executive Assistant" when you were 1-2 years old; you're turning into a pretty good one now.
I miss you. I miss spending My days with you. I miss tucking you into bed at night, your sleeping body a soft weight in My arms. I miss the relaxed feeling We always had, being together, knowing that tomorrow was simply a continuation of today, not a disconnect. I see how your face closes down when I start to say goodbye and it tears My heart to think that maybe someday, it could close Me off for good.
You act as if that could never happen and maybe you're right. It's one of the ironies of Life that parents love their children more than children love their parents. It has to be that way, for We brought you into the world, but once in it, you have to eventually make your own path.
You're making progress, Kaleb. You're stepping out on the first bold steps of your own path. We no longer really walk together, but please remember, that because I love you, you need never walk alone.
Happy Birthday, Kaleb. I'm so very happy to be your father.
The Jenius Has Spoken.