My grandfather was born on November 5th. That tidbit was served up to me by my mother on November 3rd, 2001 as I blithely ate a popsicle and bounced around on a birthing ball. I was having occasional twinges in my belly and despite having seen a horrifyingly gritty birthing video in prenatal class, I was feeling like this having a baby business was going to be a breeze. 26ish hours later I had changed my mind.

Dawson was born at 1:30 in the morning on November 5th. The ordeal it took to get him here faded in time. Initially eclipsed by fatigue and fumbling first-time mother moves, it was quickly replaced by the joy he brought us. As we prepare to celebrate his tenth birthday this week, I am struck by so many things. Memories and hopes, promises and fears jumble together as I try to come to terms with how fast he is growing up.

Do you remember being 10? I do. It’s an awkward time between child and almost-teen. Where do you fit? How come you won’t treat me like I’m older and where’s my sleep toy banklet? No typo, that’s what they’re called in our house. When I was 10 I could never figure out why people were always giving me soap as gifts. I never wore shoes if I could get away with it. I had teeth like a picket fence a truck parked on. My crush, all four-feet permed head of him, stuck a mushroom down the back of my shirt and smushed it one day at recess. These are the things I recall as I sit here 30 years later. I wonder what Daws is going to remember.

I hope he remembers that we laugh often as a family. About goofy things. I hope he remembers the time he brought tears to a teacher’s eyes for taking a boy who was crying by the hand and telling him it was going to be okay. I hope he remembers he’s thought of as a good guy. A fair kid, if a bit competitive. I hope he remembers he’s not a ninja, and that cost him five stitches. I hope the friends he has going forward are true to him, and have his back. I hope he loves hard enough to worry about loss, and I hope when he gets his heart broken he remembers there is always something to look forward to.

Do you know a 10-year-old? Tell them something neat you noticed about them. Something you saw them do, or know about them that strikes you as unique or special. They’re evolving little creatures. Layering on some good stuff in the confusion and din of today’s influences can only help. I’m going to go look at a sleeping boy who owns my heart and that I love more than my iPad, PEI sunsets, and fudge, scrabble, even Twitter. He told me recently not to worry, that when he is bigger than me our hugs will still fit. He also told me to stop putting on his soccer uniform and prancing around saying I made the team. I think he likes me. I will never let him down.

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8 Responses to Ten.

  1. Amber says:

    You should be a writer Julie! You pretty much summed it up about what its like having a 10 year old boy. Riley even though a bit crazy is 10 as well and my feelings match yours about his thoughts and dreams and what it was like to be 10. Glad he rates above that ipad but I am sure he won’t let you carry him around as closely anymore like you do it! Well maybe sometimes? You are a great mom and bring a lot of joy into your children’s lives. They will both have great memories 30 years later and will most likely tweet them etc…like you do!! LOL
    Happy Birthday to Dawson. I hope him and Riley can build some memories together even if only watching their little dancer sisters compete and terrorizing the dance studio.

    • I feel the same way, about the boys becoming friends and that I hope they grow up to love Twitter! 😉 I’m hugging you tonight at studio. This warms me up on the inside. Thank you!

  2. Jacqueline says:

    Loved this. Teary-eyed, and it’s not just the Bacardi talking.

  3. Liley says:

    Oh Julie! Like J I am also teary-eyed! He is an amazing boy that I wish I knew better; that I hope hope hope my kids can get to know too! You are an amazing mother – the proof is in the pudding. I hope you all have fun celebrating such a milestone birthday!

  4. Jenn says:

    This made me teary too. Kids grow up much too fast. I keep thinking of Adele’s first birthday looming, but to this that D is 10 is incredible. He is such a wonderful kid! I hope he really enjoys his birthday!

  5. Stacey says:

    TEN!!! My good lord. Once best friends and now two kids who would likely walk past eachother in a crowd because their lives have changed so much. Cael is currently experiencing his first heartbreak…you know, the one where he really really likes the girl and she will only admit to “a little bit”. I can see him struggling with what this all means but refuse to attempt to comfort him with the horrific mom words including how many fish there are…how little this will matter tomorrow….cuz it all matters today and so today we focus on him and his crush. Tomorrow we deal with the fact that he attempted to shear off his brother’s nipple with a sweater shaver….good times 🙂

    • wooooww hi there! I wonder if I would even recognize them?! I’m sad he’s already having his heart munched… there’s just nothing we can do as moms to buffer that, you’re right. Particularly when the path our own relationships take is not always smooth, yes? Life is good for you? I hope so. I also hope Tate has two nipples still…

  6. reccewife says:

    My oldest just turned 10 too. I thought I would struggle with the age, but so far I love it. He has so much to share and offer, and he’s not super stinky yet!

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