WOW! It's so hard for me to wrap my head around the fact that my youngest child, my "baby", is now 16 years old. Where has the time gone? Why is it going so fast? And most importantly...how do we make it slow down???
Austin was born 3 weeks early and was a tiny 5lbs 9oz, and dropped to right at 5lbs even, but was healthy enough that they let him go home with me two days after he was born.
When he was little, we always called him "buddy". One day in 3rd grade he was looking so upset and it took quite a while for him to talk to me about what was bothering him. He looked up at me and said "Mom, I know it's gonna make you really sad, but I'm a big boy now and big boys aren't called buddy. I don't wanna be called that anymore." I thought it was so sweet the way he was concerned about how it'd affect me, and I do have to admit, that was a stab in the heart knowing my baby was determined to grow up.
He's a great kid. He's very honest and prides himself on being that way. For example, it's almost a "tradition" in our area that kids miss part of the school day on their 16th birthday because they go with a parent to get their drivers license. I said to Austin yesterday "I know you have practice after school, but do you want to skip school first thing in the morning to go get your license?" Sure...not something a parent should maybe encourage, but he's a 4.0 student. Missing a couple of hours one morning, on his birthday wouldn't hurt anything, but he said no!
I sat there staring at him. "What? Are you serious?" He explained that he had an algebra test in the morning and he didn't want to have to make it up. I said "But it's your birthday...and the only time you'll be 16...and the ONLY time I'd ever let you get away with this." He politely said "No thanks." My next thought was "Who's kid is this??", because had that been me when I turned 16 I would have begged for more than just a morning!
Sadly, I have no pictures to show of his birthday celebrations until tomorrow...or Wednesday. We went out to eat for his birthday on Sunday and then Chelsea took my parents on a tour of her apartment. I rode with them to her place and left my camera in their van. Thankfully I had a disposible camera on hand, but well...I'll have to get those developed. Ugh...I'm so spoiled by my digital camera!
But here are a couple of pictures of him that I found... One when he had just turned 3 yrs old - at the height of his fascination with all things Michael Jordan and the Chicago Bulls. And the other was just take a couple of months ago. Personally, I think he was adorable back then, and he is now growing into a very handsome young man that makes this mom very proud!
Happy birthday Austin....I love you!
P.S. You'll always be my "buddy".