My dear, sweet, wonderful Son,
I'm so grateful to know you. I cannot believe that I have had the honor of being able to look into those amazingly deep, brown eyes of yours for 16 years now. From the day you were born you were like this amazing little old man who held the secrets of all the world in his soul but had the wisdom not to share them with me because I am just not wise enough to handle it...yet.
Our beginning was rocky; we both almost died but before your first breath God wanted to show you that He was there for you, that He cared and that, for you, He would move mountains, do miracles. I believe that still. I hope you do too.
You have come to a place in your life of maturity and grace that just humbles me.You have suffered so much and yet there is nothing in you that is hateful or mean spirited. I know you are not perfect, you are no saint and your pedestal isn't so high that it will hurt you if you fall...which you will...you get that clumsiness from your mother (just ask Laurana). Who you are though...well...all I can say is that I am proud of what God has done in your life.
I'm proud of your constant effort, your determination, your gentleness in spite of your pain. Not because it is a reflection of good parenting...I don't see it that way. I see you, overcoming, day by day the challenges that have held you back in the past, the preconceptions of those around you about what you can and cannot do because of your "disability", holding onto your dignity as a young man and choosing to not let go of your faith, even when it seems your prayers aren't answered and God just isn't listening.
Bubba, I'm proud of who you are, in your heart and I'm grateful for the opportunity to be a part of your life. I'm grateful to see this amazing transformation of my frail, wizened little baby into a strong and hope-filled young man. Your courage and resilience inspire me. So many people have found peace and comfort in your presence, I am no stranger to that benefit of having you around. You have always had an innate sense, an empathy that seeks to ease peoples hearts. Don't run away from that. I know that in the past it has been a source of great heartache in your life, but you are older, you have matured. Use the discernment that comes with that empathic gift and don't be afraid to love, to give, to be used.
Not all "using" is bad. Many things grow weak and worthless if they are not used as they were intended...our gifts, as human beings in this world, are like that. We don't lose them, but with neglect they become rusty and impotent. You were meant for more Bubba, never doubt that you were meant for more.
Best of all my son, you have finally grown tall enough to hug me without pain and after the years I waited, your hugs mean the world to me!
I love you, every moment, every day, I am grateful to be your Mother and proud that you are my son.
With all my heart,