Thursday, May 5, 2016

Happy 7th Birthday, Big Arrow!

I wasn't sure what I wanted to write about for your 7th birthday post until just a few days ago. We were curled up on the couch, watching "Charlie and the Chocolate Factory," the slightly creepy Johnny Depp version. I was already feeling warm and fuzzy, listening to you and your brother compare the movie version to the play we saw in London last Christmas Eve. I was feeling thankful we had the chance to do that and provide you with such an experience (and who am I kidding... me too! I loved it as much as you did!). I was mentally reflecting on all those many memories from the past few years for which I'm grateful.

And then one of Charlie's grandmothers says to Charlie as he dreams of winning a golden ticket, "Charlie, nothing is impossible."

And that's it. That's what I want to tell you this year. Anything is possible. And it truly is. I hope your short yet amazing life has taught you this already.

You're a rule follower, much like me. I think for people like us, veering off the standard path, turning away from the expected, is quite difficult. Yet it can be so amazing. There were so many moments while we were living abroad that I thought to myself, "I can't believe I'm here in this moment, doing this thing or seeing this place." I have no doubt I'll have experiences like that to come, both in our travels and in day-to-day life. I want you to feel that way about your life as well. I hope you often find yourself standing in amazement at what you're doing, seeing, feeling... something.

I know your memories of our time abroad will slowly fade until they are just a fuzzy blend of people and places. But I hope it taught you that you can do anything, go anywhere, be anyone. You're full of creativity, spirit, laughter, smiles, and snuggles. That will take you far. But I also hope you know it's ok to take chances, to step off the mainstream track, and do something scary once in a while.

Last week at school, you had to write a sentence about tackling a challenge with a positive attitude. You so simply wrote, "I moved to a different country and then back." I'll be honest... I'm not sure four years ago I was completely confident you would handle these big transitions so well. But you have, and I promise I'll never doubt your capabilities again. You're better for it, and there's a toughness about you now that you always had somewhere deep inside. You've just developed it more and let it out.

Though you'll still scream bloody murder the moment your brother so much as bumps into you. You're still not that tough.

Roald Dahl has always been a hero of mine. He's one of yours now, too, I'm proud to say. So I wouldn't dare disagree with such a genius. Nothing is impossible.

(I write posts to the boys on their birthdays. You can read Little Arrow's 1st2nd3rd, and 4th posts and Big Arrow's 2nd3rd4th, 5th, and 6th posts at the links.)

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