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Dept. of Beloved

Happy Birthday, Andy

Thirty years ago today, I gave birth to my - our - one and only child. We knew you were going to be a son, and we knew what your name was when you finally found your way to the world. You took your time arriving, but when you did, you were Andrew Louis McNeil Berlien.

In the years since then, you've been known by oh, so many names.

Some, when your were tiny, because you were something new to us, something huge and wonderful and completely scary, and that amazing baby mix of unbreakable and dangerously frangible, so we had to joke about you being in our care, or we'd have sunk under the weight of the responsibility - Goat Boy, Spud Boy, Goonlet, Goon. 

Others, as you grew, were road signs and maps of how we dealt with one another: 
Andy.
Andy-Stop-That,
Andy-I-Meant-Now.
Andy-Take-That-Out-Of-Your-Mouth.
Andy-Watch-Out.
Andy-Stay-Out-Of-The-Street.
Andy-Make-Your-Bed.
Andy-Finish-Your-Homework
.
Andy-Come-Here.
Andy-You-Did-What?
Andy-Your-Hair!
Andy-That's-Beautiful.
Andy-It's-OK.
Andy-Don't-Be-Afraid
Andy-I'm-Here.
Andy-We're-Here.
Andy-That's-Great.
Andy-You-Did-It.
Andy-I'm-So-Proud.

Mother's names. Father's names, too, because Bob was the best at raising you. You and I, we made a pretty good brother-sister team, though, didn't we?

You had other names;  as you grew, as you stumbled, as you grew some more, as you fucked up, and got smart, and fucked up again, and got smarter, and learned to care for others and helped them, and grew in wisdom even when you were being less than wise.

You tried names on for size; artist, writer, singer, musician. You kept a part of each name and molded each part into yourself. There were others, too, as you grew up further; harder worker, deeper thinker, truer heart, better friend.

You are, like all humans, a work in progress. You are, you should pardon a mother her pride, a work of self-made art. And an asshole, as all artists are, more than occasionally - you should pardon a mother her over-the-glasses-glare. And still apt to stumble. But now you get up and go on. And you think ahead, and plan almost as much as you dream. You're learning to be fearless.

Andy-I-Love-You
Andy-I-Always-Will.

Now get that out of your mouth.

This entry was originally posted at http://kaffyr.dreamwidth.org/328499.html?mode=reply, where there are currently comment count unavailable comments. You can comment there or here; I watch both.

Comments

( 10 comments — Leave a comment )
gerisullivan
Oct. 20th, 2014 06:28 am (UTC)
kaffyr-That's-Beautiful.

Much joy to Andy on his 30th, and to you and Bob as well. Goshwow.
kaffyr
Oct. 20th, 2014 03:08 pm (UTC)
He is a wonderful person, and I'm happy to let others share in him, even slightly. And I'll pass on your best wishes!
flowsoffire
Oct. 20th, 2014 06:41 am (UTC)
♥♥♥♥♥
kaffyr
Oct. 20th, 2014 03:09 pm (UTC)
Thank you, my dear!
flowsoffire
Oct. 20th, 2014 05:02 pm (UTC)
That was a beautiful love letter :) For a beautiful family. Your posts are full of such warmth.
kaffyr
Oct. 20th, 2014 09:57 pm (UTC)
a_phoenixdragon
Oct. 21st, 2014 12:39 am (UTC)
Kaffyr-Wonderful-Mother-Wife-and-Friend - this was lovely. Happy Birthday to Andy! May he always be learning, growing and being awesome (just like his Mom and Dad raised him to be).

*HUGS EVERYONE*
kaffyr
Oct. 21st, 2014 12:43 am (UTC)
Thanks - I'll pass it one to the gentleman in question, who is enjoying a Pearl Jam concert up in Milwaukee, as a birthday present from a friend (I AM SO JEALOUS).

I didn't know how I was going to acknowledge his birthday, and how much I loved him, and then this sort of happened shortly after midnight. I'm glad it didn't come across as sort of weird. And BB is definitely the person to thank when it comes to parenting.

*hugs right back*
livii
Oct. 21st, 2014 04:27 am (UTC)
<3

This was wonderful.
kaffyr
Oct. 21st, 2014 04:42 am (UTC)
Thank you. He's a wonderful kid (and will always be a kid to me, of course!)
( 10 comments — Leave a comment )

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