How dare these kids grow up behind our back and throw it in our face with that disloyal act once a year: their birthday.
Kidding aside, I am happy to celebrate my son's 15th year tomorrow because I'm filled with appreciation for the wild ride of him -- the grand adventure of Tucker Francis Fish.
That said, I can't help but wonder where did my pudgy boy go? Today he's a lean teenager who towers over me and when I look up at him, I'm puzzled. Just how did that happen? Where did the time go?
The thing about these boys -- who seem like they're on an eternal growth spurt -- is that you feel like you're meeting up with a stranger every day. That's when I smile to myself and calmly remind myself to enjoy the adventure of this stranger. What's more, I remind myself that this miraculous stranger gets to choose his own path. Finally, I remind myself that I don't own this stranger. On the day of his birth, the doctor did not give me an owner's manual.
Of course it helps to reflect on this wise passage from Kahlil Gibran:
"Your children are not your children.
They are the sons and daughters of Life's longing for itself.
They come through you but not from you,
And though they are with you, yet they belong not to you.