Thing 1



Dear E,

I know you hate that B&W picture from that collage. But I love it. And I’m the one making what you call a “white-girl collage,” so I get to pick my favorite photos.

You are now older than I was on the day I gave birth to you. I have officially been a Mom longer than I’ve not been a Mom. I am no longer the Mother of a teenager. I’m the mother of a 20-year old. An adult who sends out important emails to groups he leads and has a job and goes to school and cleans toilets (hopefully) and worries about the utility bill and house-breaking his new puppy.

I’m so proud of you that my heart feels like it’s going to explode, and yet I’m also just sad that you really don’t need me anymore.

I know I give you a lot of guilt for not calling me enough, but know that I come from a long line of Catholics and guilt trips are how we show love.

You’re an amazing brother, still willing to drag your brother and your sister around your adult world, because they don’t want to leave your side even for a second when we visit. Seeing how you interact with them always reminds me how excited you were to become a big brother. I know they drive you crazy sometimes, but they will always be your biggest fans.

I guess some day I’ll have to quit writing cheesy blog entries on your birthday…there are 10 others before this one lingering in my archives…providing a digital footprint of my lameness over the course of your life so far. They all basically say the same thing: STOP GROWING UP ALREADY.

13th (This one I freak out about you being a teenager. Now I’m sad you are no longer one.)
16th (This one may be my favorite.)

Anyway…you are awesome. I hope I tell you that enough. I hope I don’t tell you so much that you tune it out. If I had a dollar for every time someone gave me a compliment about you I’d have like…several hundred dollars to spend on donuts.

Whether it’s kind words about you working at Fresh Market, compliments about your gorgeous hair, or enjoyment over your humor on Twitter or Instagram. (See what I did there? Being a good blog Mom and trying to get your more followers on your social media accounts.) People are always telling me how awesome you are…like I need the reminder.

I love you with all of my heart and I miss you terribly every day. I hope you have a great day and that you’ll maybe call me to tell me something funny that happened. You would probably stop calling me if you saw how excited I got whenever I see it’s you on the other side of the ring. I dork out and try to play it cool, “Hey. What’s up.” But really I’m all, “ELIAH IS CALLING. NO ONE BOTHER ME UNTIL I AM OFF THE PHONE OR EVERYONE GETS GROUNDED.”

Happiest of Birthdays to you, my 20-year old son. Thanks for making me feel proud (and old) every single day.


13 thoughts on “20.”

  1. Happy anniversary of being a mom, and hAppy birthday to the artist formerly know as lil z.

  2. Oh my. This was lovely.

    My oldest turns 19 this year. And then next year will be my “I’ve been a mom longer than I wasn’t a mom” anniversary.

    You’ve done an amazing job, and Lilz is growing into a wonderful man. Congrats!

  3. Happy birthday, E.

    I’m feeling sappy too. Being allowed a peek into his life through you has been awesome. I’m proud for you and the amazing job you’ve done as his mama. Nice work, Kim. To put it mildly.

  4. Tears…oh you two are so cute. Love this relationship. Happy Birthday Eliah!! We love you dearly!!

  5. Happy Birthday! I have been reading your blog… FOREVER… and remember so many stories you’ve shared. You are an amazing mom, you have to be, just look how awesome your son turned out! I love the relationship the two of you share and I strive for that with my own. Much love and hugs to you both on this birthday!

  6. Happy Birthday, E! You were in elementary school and called Little Z or something like that when I started reading your mom’s blog. How did you get to be 20? I hope you have a wonderful day.

  7. anastasia and i were talking about it being his bday this morning as i was driving her to the airport to fly back to chicago (sob).

    she was/is still floored that, at the point/ages the three of them are at now, the three of us were pregnant w/ them. FLOORED. 🙂

    but even more so, we talked about how awesome eliah ALWAYS has been…and of course, continues to be every single day! he has always amazed me…as has your parenting of him.

    we are ALL so blessed to have him in our lives…you most of all!


  8. Happy Birthday Eliah. I love you so much and remember those 20 birthdays.
    Have a great day and be safe (I can say that because I am GRAMMY)

  9. No. Freaking. Way. I refuse to believe it, though the pictures show the truth of how awesome he’s ending up as a, gulp, grown up. Yet another reader who has followed through the years.

    Have a great day Eliah/E/LilZ.

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