Hi, Baby Boy. I love you. We are celebrating the 9th of every month now because that is the day you made your debut into this crazy world.
Yesterday, we spread your love by leaving quarters at places where people wash their clothes and also where they clean their vroom vrooms. We also handed out a few of your favorite toy vroom vrooms at the park from Aunt Annie Lindo.
One of the first places Daddy and I went, we saw a man with one leg and crutches washing his car. He had someone with him, but he was doing all the work himself. I hadn’t thought much about it then, but I’m sure it was difficult for him to learn how to take care of things like washing his vroom vroom, but he did it! He is independent just like you, and I could tell he takes pride in working hard in everything he does. I will never hose down my rubber floor mats again without thinking of him. I can picture you wanting to clean the car mats now and yelling “self, self,” if I tried to guide the water spray even the slightest bit. You know, you have a baby cousin that reminds me of you, too. Her newest trick is to grunt and throw her head back when she is forced to do anything that wasn’t her idea. I’m not sure where you guys got that “I’ll do it myself” gene. Wink, wink.
I miss you like crazy, Caleb. Sometimes I don’t know what to do with all of these overwhelming emotions. I know the reason I miss you so deeply is because I love you so intensely, too. I try to keep in mind that every day that ends means I’m one day closer to getting to see you and hold you in my arms again. Maybe you know how long Daddy and I are going to be here and you cross off the days on a calendar until we get to kiss your perfect, soft face. I REALLY don’t like being patient, so I hope time does actually feel like it speeds up as we get older like I hear elderly people proclaim. I wonder if there is a magic age that time starts flying by or if it has more to do with how busy or contented people are when they say things like “in a blink of an eye, 20 years had passed.” I hope that is the way it works for all of us, too.
Thank you for letting us notice the “ABC Child Development” business during our adventure. Neither one of us had ever seen it before even though we must have driven past it many times. Daddy and I aren’t ever going to be the same without our entertaining “Little C,” but we really love when you make yourself undeniably present. The yellow Hummer was a nice touch as well.
Like the template from your website, you really are changing the world. People are being more patient with their kids, forgiving people that may not deserve it, and being nice, all because of you. Do you really know what a magnificent little boy you are?
I also met some very special kids trying to raise money to buy uniforms. Two junior high boys stopped me as I was swapping my dollar bills for coins, and they asked if they could wash Mommy’s car for me. I told them I was only there to get quarters, but gave them some money in your honor because they were working hard and I wanted to reward them for that. One of the young men asked me what happened to you, and when I told them they couldn’t find a reason, he said he was sorry for my loss. It was a brief reply, but the way he said it and looked me straight in the eye was a more heartfelt response than some adults.
There were probably at least 10 kids about the same age trying to raise money, so I went over to their adult chaperone and told them what a good job they were doing and how I appreciated what she was teaching the kids. She said many of their parents don’t show up to anything so she is trying to be a good influence to show them a brighter future. I told her I wasn’t rich and that in fact, I will be losing my job next month, but I would keep them in my prayers. Right then and there she hugged me tight and said a prayer for both of us! I hope you will watch over these kids and let their team “OKC Storm Cheer” get the uniforms and support they need. Once again, I don’t think it was an accident that this group happened to be there when all I wanted to do is get quarters (and leave a few there).
We hope some of those quarters made a small difference to a few people in our community. We’ve always had the luxury of having a washing machine and dryer at home, but did you know that many people aren’t as lucky? Something we take for granted (and something Mommy really doesn’t enjoy), is an all-day event for some families. Some don’t have a vroom vroom so they have to load up everything and take a bus to the laundromat. Next time I will also remember to leave some toy vroom vrooms for the kids to play with while their parents are crossing this necessity off their to-do lists. Mommy didn’t want to draw attention by spending more time taping quarters to the templates, and the price per load wasn’t posted on the windows, so I didn’t always guess the right amount of change required to do a load, but I hope it lifted spirits anyway.
As the Aesop quote says, “No act of kindness, however small, is ever wasted.”
Speaking of the template, did you notice the “change” template has a butterfly instead of a vroom vroom in your logo? That’s because before butterflies become beautiful, graceful aviators, they have to slowly inch their way through Earth as caterpillars. Those of us still living in this realm are like the simple caterpillar trudging through life, trying to stay fed, and have enough energy to outwit our predators. We are still learning all the things that you seemed to instinctively know from the beginning.
Caterpillars are supposed to go through several stages before they convert into this gentle creation, but maybe you already had everything figured out and that’s why it only took you two years in this parallel universe. We were always proud of the way you loved to learn new things, but this is one area in which we wish you weren’t so advanced. Someday we won’t need Earthly food and we will get to shed our old skins, too. We will be like the Swallowtail Caterpillar spinning our silken girdles in the shape of a “c!” That’s right, a “c,” just like your name.
Help us continue to find motivation and energy to feed ourselves so that we can create beautiful moments in your honor. We will do our best to weave silk as soft as your golden-brown hair and metamorphose to new life as peaceful, light souls too. You have already made the radical transformation, but we are looking forward to the day when we will soar and dance on air together as a family again. Happy 9th to you, Sweet Boy.
I love you.