Monday, February 2, 2009

Blake Turns 12

Cell phone in hand, Blake gets ready to blow out the candles on his birthday cake.

How in the world do I already have a 12-year-old??

So many changes. Some are subtle, some not so much as he grows into who he's supposed to be. His tenderness grows more sophisticated, his interests are maturing, his tolerance for Mom and Dad's advice is waning, but at the heart of it all, I'm still in awe of this amazing 12-year-old, my son.

It's so cliche, but he's growing up so fast. Too fast.

The bright yellow head band he dutifully wore for soccer games when he was 6 is long gone. But soccer is still there, rooted within his body and soul.

The wedge cut and short spiky hairstyles have grown out, replaced by beautiful long silky locks. I keep wondering when he'll announce that he's ready for a short style again ... when the long hair will be another wonderful memory.

The Harry Potter and Lemony Snicket volumes -- and scores of other favorites -- are still on the bookshelf, having been read and re-read through the years. He still loves to read but these days more time is spent hanging out with friends -- usually Anthony.

The care and compassion for his 4-year-old brother and sister have blossomed. On a recent day he was in tears when we couldn't find Allie, who was hiding under a bed. When Zach cries at night, Blake comes to his side and tries to soothe him.

The relationship with his 8-year-old brother is becoming more complicated (is that just a nice word for they fight more nowadays?) as they both struggle to find their place in life, within the family, with friends, and with each other.

Homework is an inconvenience for him; it's often done at the last minute and he's still not the most organized person, yet he still gets straight A's.

Skateboarding proved to be a phase. Baseball was given up two years ago. Sending and receiving text messages is of utmost importance these days. In fact, I didn't notice it at the time, but as I looked through the pictures I took of Blake and his birthday celebration, there it is, in hand -- his cell phone.

Apparently he had to check his text messages as the rest of us sang Happy Birthday.

"Don't wait to make your son a great man - make him a great boy."
~Author Unknown

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