Sunday, January 6, 2013

Happy Birthday Young Man

To my son Tommy,

Happy Birthday!  In just four short years, you have taught me much more about life than I may ever get to teach you.  I suspect that statement will hold true year after year no matter when you read this.  You started teaching me about life even nine months before you took your first breath in this world.  You taught me about love and hope and being genuine and how everything seems better when a you get a hug from your child.  You gave me the thrill of hearing an excited boy squeal "Daddy" when I came home from work, an unequaled high that will never be topped.  You have grown into such a fine young man, even if you are still only four.

The weekend has been jam packed with fun.  Yesterday we went up the Links at Gettysburg for a get together with some of the Klein side of the family.  We couldn't quite work everyone's schedule to make it happen before Christmas so we just did it after.  Remember Christmas isn't a time, it is a state of mind, and there is no time like the present time to spend time with family.  You jumped right in with your cousins and within minutes it was like you see them every day.  You even "crashed" a couple family photos.  They were trying to get a "just this fam" picture and there you are lined up and with your big cheesy beautiful smile.  Your Great Aunt Joyce just laughed and welcomed the "adopted" grandson in the picture.  You went from table to table and charmed everyone again.  You attached yourself to your cousin Natalie like a little leach or shadow and I think you had some extra hugs for your Great Aunt Bonni who you had a little crush on as well.  You ran and played and had a great time.  When it came time for leaving, your eyes teared up and your lip started quivering.  You hate leaving a party or family or friends.  Never be ashamed of a genuine tear.  Saying goodbye and parting company, to be frank, usually sucks and your reaction is appropriate.  Unfortunately it had to happen, especially with your birthday being today.

We celebrated your birthday today at Westview AMF Bowling Lanes.  Some duckpins and some more family.  The lane you were on had a hard curve to right that was pretty obvious when dealing with the slow speeds of a ball thrown by a four year old.  But you sure knocked the heck out of the six, nine, and ten pin.  I think the excitement and all the events of the day and the weekend began to overwhelm you.  You had a little bit of meltdown during the birthday cake because you wanted to sit on the driving arcade game.  Then we had to skip opening presents there because you weren't cooperating.  Though we robbed some people of your good manners and thank yous and genuine excitement that occurs naturally with you opening a gift, I think it worked out for the better.  It allowed people to get going if they needed or wanted to and, since the Ravens playoff game was going on, many people wanted to go watch the game in their comfy seats!  We opened your gifts when we got home and your face just really lit up with every single gift you opened.  You are blessed with such thoughtful friends and family and owe everyone a big thank you and hug.

You sacked out about an hour or maybe even two hours ago.  You are quite the life of the party but at four years old your stamina is a bit lacking for the after party.  I imagine you dreaming about all your presents and all your friends and all your cousins and all your family.  I just hope you aren't mixing your dream metaphors and picturing them as bowling pins.  God bless you my son and here is to the past four years and to the next ninety six more.

Sincerely with love from your dad,

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