Thursday, November 20, 2014
Happy Birthday to my son Adam Osman Hoad!!!
As of today, November 21st 2014, I’m the mother of an adult. Only a few parents are privileged to be blessed with a gifted son like you.
The day you were born was a day to celebrate! Today is the perfect day to celebrate you. Happy birthday to the best son in the whole wide world! I do not mean to embarrass you with this; however, I do believe that it is a mother's prerogative to allow her emotions to overwhelm her at certain points of her life.
You have brought me nothing but pure joy since that very first moment. Watching you grow, absorbing the world around you, inquisitive and delighted to learn, I’m reminded each day of the treasure you bring into my world.
I remember standing for hours by your crib, just looking at you. I was in awe that such a precious, perfect little baby was mine. I was so in love that I would just cry sometimes as I held you. Some nights I would get up just to hold you while you slept, feeling that I am the luckiest mum alive to have you for my son. It seems like yesterday I was bringing you home from the hospital, yesterday’s echoes bring back sweet memories of you. There are so many ‘firsts’ memories… since you were born you added something amazing into my life.
You have made my life so much better just by being in it. I’m just the lucky mum that gets to claim and love you. You have been a source of pride and joy for us. Parenting you has been the ride of a lifetime.
The opportunity to begin the next chapter of your life as you enter into adult-hood is one of them and that my chapter as your mother begin to change as well. A mother’s love knows no bounds and neither does her sadness and trepidation as her son moves onto the next phase of his life, without her holding his hand every step of the way. Wisdom is not a gift that we can give you darling, it’s something you must earn and you have become so wise over the years.
Parenting you has been the ride of a lifetime. I wouldn’t trade it or give up a second I’ve spent with you, worrying about you, loving you, and arguing with you. It has been 18 years of pure emotion: love, joy, worry, anger, frustration, and terror at times.
I worried and wondered at times about whether I was being the best parent I could be.
Did I make you feel important?
Did we find enough time for the little things that live on in happy memories - like laughter, and hugs, and "just-between-us" moments?
Did I show you enough that you mean the world to me?
And, more importantly, did you always know I loved you, even when I was angry at you?
I hope I’ve given you enough and made you feel loved, cherished and important.
As all mothers do, I have goals, dreams and wishes for you. I have, as you can imagine, dozens of them and to name a few…
I wish for the kind heart I see you in now to stay firmly in place. Keep it, nurture it, and handle it with care.
The best part of my day is the joy infused by your smile, your hugs, the tender way you put your hand on my face or suddenly say, “Mommy, how was YOUR day?” I couldn’t live without your affection and kindness.
Don’t ever apologize for who you are, for what you want, for how hard you have worked or where you are going in life. I don’t doubt you will work hard, DO NOT back down and GO for it. Stand your ground, be proud of you. Do not live to make others happy or to measure up to someone else’s expectations. Be Adam. This is enough.
Be a student. Be a teacher. Learn at every opportunity. Read. Be inquisitive. Ask. And when you know something and know it well – teach others. Do not hoard your knowledge, your gifts – share them. There is inherent beauty in being both student and teacher. It is a gift to learn and a privilege to teach.
As much as I would love to see you succeed in everything you do… as much as I believe in your gifts, I must wish you challenges for it is within the losses and the failures that your character will be built. It is my job, as your mom, to do my best to guide you through these moments. If everything was to be easy for you, you would be ill-prepared for the ‘real’ world. I promise you, life is not always easy.
Your dreams: do them.
Your heart: follow it.
Your family: treasure them.
Your friends: be loyal to them.
Your fears: embrace them and allow them to make you stronger.
The money you earn: respect it.
Your passion: LIVE IT.
Seek joy. Every single day, find something that makes you happy and do it. Be it big or small – an act of kindness, listening to a song you love, calling a friend, watching a ball game with your dad – it quite simply doesn’t matter.
What matters is that you spend a portion of each day smiling and laughing. This is how you came in to the world; it is only fitting that keep the tradition going.
And my ‘one to grow on’ - I wish to be here for each of your moments…. to keep you on track.
The best things in life really are free… and invisible. A grateful heart is a content heart. A content heart is a simple heart. And a simple heart leads to a simplified life. Life is to be happy, to be useful, to be responsible, and to be compassionate.
It is, above all to matter, to count, to stand for something, to have made some difference that you lived at all. Your values are your current estimations of truth. They represent your answer to the question of how to live.
We have cherished all the priceless moments watching you grow up and we will always remember these tender memories for the rest of our lives. Wherever life will take you, whatever endeavours that you choose, we will always be so proud of you!
Thank you, sweetheart, for completing our family! You are loved for the smart kid you were, the charming person you are now, and the wonderful son you will always be!
My son we wish you a very happy 18th birthday today! You deserve all the love and good wishes you can receive.
We love you beyond forever….
note to AOH