I don’t know at what point kids’ ages stop sounding all grown up, but it’s not 14 years old. My boy Ben turns 14 today – yes on Thanksgiving! – and it sounds impossible and sudden to me. Even so, I love having big kids and am happy to celebrate him!
November has been an incredibly hard month for my boy. It’s a story I’ll probably share publicly at some point. For now, I’m giving thanks for Ben’s life and our community of people who love him well. We started celebrating on Sunday with eight of his friends and our dear friends the Gachokas who are like family. We had a delicious meal at Texas Roadhouse and then spent a couple of hours at Top Golf. The ride to and from Nashville was loud — with singing, middle school humor, and spicy hot takes.
The bigger picture: it’s not just these friends who love our boy, and I’m grateful to know so many have encouraged and supported him through the years. We’ve seen this real-life community in this hard season he’s facing, and we are so thankful to be surrounded by so much goodness. I’m praying my boy continues to soak in that truth.
Meanwhile, he loves making music playlists, watching videos from Mark Rober and Dude Perfect and How Ridiculous, building and taking apart pretty much anything, eating double bacon cheeseburgers, drinking Glacier Freeze Gatorade, collecting key chains and crazy socks, and playing soccer. He likes to anticipate what’s next, is a good friend to people, and would rather not be at school.
I’m proud of his bravery to work through hard things and look forward to seeing what God continues to do in his life.
You’re brave and bold. I’m thankful to call you my son and watch you be a friend to so many people. I pray you know you’re loved by God, your family, and your friends. Walking through this world can be hard and dark, but there’s so much goodness in the light.
Keep being you and following where God leads. I love being on this journey with you! Happy birthday, son!
I share more of Ben’s story in my book “Peace in the Process: How Adoption Built My Faith & My Family,” which is available for FREE through Nov. 26 on Amazon.