Tears of Cheese.

I’ll never forget the day my first son was born. It was thirteen years ago today.
I was sure I was having a girl. My mom was sure I was having a girl. My entire family was sure I was having a girl. Everyone at my baby shower was sure I was having a girl and spoiled me with lots of little pink outfits and pink blankets.
After many hours of labor and over 2 hours of intense pushing, imagine our surprise when my first baby finally slid out of my vagina and the nurse yelled…”It’s a BOY!”
This is the conversation that followed.
Tony: Thank you JESUS!
Me: Ok, enough with that, Tony.
Doc: He SHOULD be thanking Jesus.
My mom: It’s a BOY??
Tony: Hallelujah. (Don’t ask. He was SUPER SPIRITUAL that day.)
Me: Tony!
Mom: It’s A BOY? Ohhhhhhh man.
My mom: What are you thinking right now, Y?
Me: About all of the clothes I have to take back!
Doc: Did they TELL you it was a girl.
Me: No. I just thought it was.
My Mom: We HOPED it was. It was a hope.
Doc: Idiots.
Ok, he didn’t call us idiots, but you know he was thinking it.
I’m so glad it wasn’t a girl. The poor thing would have been named Whitney Elaine.
WHITNEY! Or wait, was it Soriah?
SORIAH GRACE! It would have been Soriah Grace.
She would have hated me at some point in her life.
It was a boy. A little boy.
I had a son.
A perfect, soft, scrunchy faced, precious little boy.
I’ll never forget how perfect he was the first time I layed my bloodshot, tired eyes on him. He had all of his fingers. All of his toes. Scrunched up little eyes, eyebrows shaped just like his daddy’s, a nose just like his grandpa’s. Fuzzy, black hair and full, perfectly shaped lips.
The first time I held him in my arms, I felt my heart explode into a million little pieces and I knew in an instant that it no longer belonged to me. That little boy in my arms was now the Owner of My Heart.
I can’t describe the pride I felt as I stared at his sweet little face. I can’t describe the love I felt as I kissed his fuzzy little head. I can’t describe the joy I felt as he wrapped his precious little hand around my finger. There are no words to describe it.
Amazing. Awesome. Incredible. Exciting. Beautiful. Astounding. Breathtaking. Miraculous. Marvelous.
Those are powerful words, and yet, they don’t even BEGIN to accurately describe what I felt in my soul on the day my son was born.
My son.
Nor or there any words that could accurately describe what I feel inside of my soul today. The day that beautiful little baby turns thirteen.
I’m happy. I’m sad. I’m excited. I’m sad. I’m overjoyed. I’m sad. I’m proud. I’m sad.
Bittersweet That’s the only way to describe what I’m feeling.
Last night, we had the Greatest Dinner Conversation Ever.
Shrinkage. Sweaty balls. (And what one must do to unstick that sweaty ball from ones leg.) How to release poops that are stuck.
We all laughed so hard we cried.
At one point, Andrew was taking a drink and as Ethan got up to demonstrate how HE deals with Sweaty Balls, Andrew spit his drink out and started choking from laughing so hard.
It was in that moment it hit me that my son is a teenager. And at that point, the tears from laughter turned into tears of sadness, because I don’t know if I can handle him growing so quickly.
First. The Hairy balls. Then, the Fuzzstache. NOW THE TEENAGE YEARS.
Girls. Dates. Dances. Getting jobs. Driving.
Time is moving incredibly fast and my heart hasn’t had a chance to catch up to speed.
That sweet smelling, soft, calm, perfect little baby is now a teenager who has an incredible sense of humor, who is witty, kind, respectful and thoughtful of others.

And as I watch him become a young man, I feel just as much pride as I did the first time I held him in my arms. I’m so damn proud of the incredible human being he’s become in the thirteen years of his life.
My God, I’m so proud of him.
And yet, at the same time, I wish I could shrink him back into that little baby boy who cooed, and cried, and sucked on his little fingers and wanted nothing more than to be cuddled safely in his mommy’s arms. Because as much as I love the person he has become, as much as I enjoy his company, as much as I enjoy every day with this amazing young man, my heart aches because I can no longer hold him in my arms and kiss him all over the way I did when he was just my little baby boy.
I wish someone had warned me about how much it would hurt to watch your children grow. I mean, it’s beautiful and wonderful and exciting… but it’s equally painful and sad. Because you there comes a point where you realize they will be independent adults and when you’ve spent your ENTIRE ADULT LIFE being “their mom”, the thought that one day they won’t need you in that way anymore is a crushing blow to your heart.
Leave it to ME to make my son’s THIRTEEN BIRTHDAY a depressing event, rather than the joyous, exciting one it should be.
I know HE’S not sad today, I know he’s the happiest kid alive today because he can now proclaim that “HE IS A TEENAGER!”
I feel like an ass of a mother for having to go to a wedding on this momentous day in his life and he knows I’m not happy about it and is making me feel like a bigger ass at every chance he gets.
“I can’t believe you’re leaving me on my THIRTEENTH BIRTHDAY!”
And just as I start to cry from guilt, he laughs and says “I’m just teasing you mom! I understand that you have to go, I’m not mad at you.”
(Can you understand why I’m so damn proud of him? Not just proud. DAMN PROUD.)
I love that boy, even if he did go and turn into a “teenager” faster than I had ever imagined and I truly hope that this is a great birthday for him. He deserves all of the happiness in the world.

34 thoughts on “Tears of Cheese.

  1. Vicky (Desperate to be a Housewife)

    Awww, happy birthday to your new teenager! And a beautiful post for him to look back on someday.
    I’ve had a teenager for two years and, like your son, she’s was a great kid to start with. It makes it so much easier to deal with the rocky parts when a kid starts out in the right way.
    Congrats to you both!

  2. Kirsten

    Y! Damn you and your ability to get me all teary!
    I feel that bittersweetness when seeing my neices getting older – but it’s gotta be ten-fold when it’s your own kid. My goodness, I can’t even imagine. Congratulations on raising an awesome young man – and I’ll be praying for you…teenagers suck.
    Also – since the hubby and I have 6 neices and the pressure is ON for us to produce some boys…got any tips? You’ve done it twice, so you must know what you’re doing 🙂 hehehe

  3. Jen

    Happy Birthday, Andrew!
    Y, this post brought tears to my eyes. Sweaty balls, ha ha ha! (I’m in a house of all boys, I’m sure that will be the least of the funny conversations when they are older!)

  4. trish

    Happy Birthday!
    I’m 6 months ahead of you. Wait until the girls start calling. My son asked me yesterday what kinky meant because a girl told him another girl was kinky. I’m frightened of the teenage years, but more frightened of today’s teenage girls.

  5. Bronwen

    Beautiful post! I have my crackers out, because I was just eating up the cheese. I marvel over my daughter this way – she’s 4.5 years old and more sassy and independent than I ever was. I can’t wait to see who she becomes, but I too grieve the loss of that sweet baby girl.
    Ah, motherhood.

  6. Mamacita

    You have a son to be proud of, yes. And your son has a mother to be proud of. And both of you are. Do you realize how RARE that is, today? Congratulations to both of you.

  7. dana michelle

    OK. I am at work, reading this on my lunch hour and fighting back tears. So knock it off, willya?
    For someone who was complaining of writer’s block a few short days ago, you came up with an incredible tribute to your firstborn. You are such an incredible mom. You love your family so fiercely and completely. And you have a way of putting your feelings into words that gets to me, every time.
    Happy 13th Birthday Andrew! Welcome to your teen years, but don’t grow up too fast, now. And by the way, do have any idea how lucky you are to have Y for your mom?
    Have fun at your wedding tonight Y. I know you will be fabulous in your sassy little black dress.
    I’ll expect pictures tomorrow :^}

  8. Karen

    so next time you stress over weight issues or money issues or any issues remember that God chose your perfect body, and perfect class, to chose the perfect person to join with you and make a perfect baby.
    In short, your body can’t be so bad if it made something so perfect.
    think about it.

  9. JesseeezMom

    Once again I am (happy)teary at work. My “baby” is going to be 21 in April. I know it’s so many years, but that awesome amazing event is so fresh with the way you described it. The Dr. saying she’s got all her fingers & toes and at that moment knowing she’s now got possesion of your heart as well. Teenagers aren’t frightening, the just little ones in bigger bodies with more interesting senses of humor 🙂 Enjoy!!

  10. Laura

    It really IS beautiful and painful, that’s a great description. You’re a superb mama, Yvonne, and your kids are lucky lucky to have you. Happy Birthday to teenager!

  11. Nicole

    I say congratulations to you on such a big day. You’ve made it 13 years! Your son does sound like a great kid.
    Don’t let guilt ruin your time at the wedding. You deserve to have fun and celebrate, too. I always think a mom should get a gift on her kid’s birthday’s, too. Your son sounds like the ultimate gift.

  12. chris

    Happy 13th Birthday to your son!!!
    And happy birth of a mother day to you. I know what you mean about the time going too quickly… sigh.

  13. pookie

    I just wrote about my son…8 months old, and how I know soon…he too will be all grown up.
    I am soaking up this babyhood.
    You made me cry…thanks Y!

  14. amalah

    You think you invented…um…
    Stop whining about…shit…
    Pressed wood? Anyone?
    That was gorgeous, Y. Just gorgeous.

  15. fl0w3r

    I love your cheese. I just put up some cheese of my own in honor of my son’s first birthday. Give your teen a big squish for me…because you know…teens love to be squished on. 😉

  16. laurie

    Happy belated birthday to your son!
    and I just wanted to let you know that I ahem, read your post about the wedding, in my rss feeder girly.
    hymilec manuaver???
    bwahahahaha. drunk blogging is the bestest.

  17. gtc

    Oh gosh, I cried when I read this. You are such a wonderful mother. It is so amazing to read about your experiences and feelings. My son is only 4 and I can’t believe how fast he’s growing. My emotions sometimes get the best of me when I reflect, so reading this really hit home. Thank you for sharing this with us. 🙂

  18. Jerri Ann

    bahahahah! This so cool! I can’t imagine myself with big kids…I know it is coming but I can’t imagine how life will change! Enjoy!

  19. Mona

    Happy Birthday to Andrew. Thanks for the beautiful post, yes I cried so hard, laughed too.

  20. beth

    awwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwww happy birthday to him!!1
    yea i know exactly how you feel! i hate when they grow up but then again i love it !

  21. Mariann

    Happy 13th! This is such a wonderfully affirming entry for mothers of boys, and I thank you for sharing it. My son is only five years old, but he’s already showing signs of leaving his innocence behind. *sniff* And then he does these inexplicable things, and then I think, how am I gonna deal with this kid when the boy-gene really kicks in?!? I hope I’m as strong and as proud as you are when he’s thirteen and happily sharing his, um, hairy developments. 🙂

  22. Kathy

    This post has reminded me to cherish every single moment of my 2 month old son’s life right now because in a moment, he’ll be thirteen and I’ll be wishing he was a tiny baby again.

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