It can’t really have made much of a difference… last week to this week. You’re my same boy. You’d still rather stay up all night watching Star Wars or Lord of the Rings. We butt heads sometimes, but at the end of it, you’re my easy child. You’re kind and patient and happy and helpful. You’re a schemer and a planner, just like me. You love being in the kitchen, treating every meal like a puzzle… just like your Dad.
You want to be a ranger for a National Park when you grow up, and I think you’d be great at it. Not interested in being the president, or a pioneer of anything… you just want to be able to protect the world, and teach other people how they can enjoy and protect it, too. That’s your spirit, right there in a nutshell.
This is going to be the age where you and I don’t have much in common. You’re pretty much Aunt Sam made over as a boy, and I didn’t get her either. But it’s also the age where I can start seeing what kind of man you’ll be, and already, your Daddy and I are so proud of you. You’re a good person. You’re a real person. You’re a loving person. And really, you’re pretty cool too. That last one is just a bonus, but the first three are everything we could have wanted you to be. Everything else… what you do for a living, who you love, what you study, how you dress… none of that really matters to us at all. Do GOOD in the world, like you’re doing right now. And that’s all you’d ever have to do for us to be “cheering from the rooftops” proud of you.
Love you, baby boy.