Happy Birthday Carter.

I don’t believe that God gave me my children because I’m special.  In fact, most families of special kids will tell you the same. We get bored of hearing it, even though we recognize that people are telling us this because they want to give us comfort- they want to say something when really, there’s nothing to be said.

There are exeptions. There are families I know who are remarkably suited to having the children that they do. They came this way. Like Lance. His calm personality, his ability to jump over the hurdles that trip me up. His ability to immediately see past the disability and see the child. He’s taught me how to be a better parent.

Another exception to this is my son Carter. He turns ten today.

There have been many times where I go to see what Abby is doing and find her here.

Carter is proof to me that God does have a hand in my life. Carter is a carbon copy of Lance, and that makes me so happy. Lance was gone last week to DC. During that time, Abby was still throwing up, Casey was in a funk and I was on my second week of this nasty cold. By his third day gone, I was exhausted and nearing my wits end. 

I was laying on the couch and Carter came up, knelt beside me and rubbed my shoulder and told me he’d take care of things. He didn’t complain. He never keeps score. He just DOES. He helped Casey with his homework and played with Abby so I could close my eyes for a minute.

 And this wasn’t an isolated incident. He is like this ALL of the time.  Carter has a remarkable ability to judge how I’m feeling- something that Lance’s mom said he was great at- and he just DOES what needs to be done.  He sees that we are having our battles with Casey’s rage or Abby’s lungs, and picks up the slack.

It’s hard for me to see him taking on such responsibility for a ten year old, so when he’s obnoxious and crazy like a regular ten year old, it does my heart good.  And he can be obnoxious and crazy and totally full of energy. I don’t know where he gets the amount of energy he has always had, but he puts it to good use. After spending the summer out shooting hoops EVERY SINGLE DAY for at least an hour, Carter made it onto the select tournament basketball team here. He now plays for two basketball teams and still manages to run circles around me the rest of the day.

I can’t believe he’s ten. A decade ago I was laying in a hospital bed worrying about my tiny little son who was hooked up to a ventilator along with too many other chords and wires. They wouldn’t let me hold him.  But even from the beginning, Carter was strong and resilient. When I got to really hold him for the first time- when he was five days old- I didn’t want to stop holding him. Even ten years later, he’s still okay with letting his mom cuddle with him. 

Happy Birthday Carter!

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