Thursday, July 8, 2010

Been There

Summer is not my favorite time of the year. Even with all of the fun activities going on, the summer heat begins to drag me down. July is a particularly hectic month for me.  There is alot going on in July: the 4th of July, the cats' birthdays (no, we don't have a party), my nephew's birthday, trips to the beach, my youngest son's birthday.  It's the last one that brings mixed emotions.  This year he will be 8 years old.  What makes it really difficult is that his cousin is one week older than he is and there is a world of difference between the two boys.  Each July, this fact stares me in the face - undeniable and unavoidable. 

Parents shouldn't compare their children to others, but the fact is we do to some extent.  My son and my nephew may be the same age chronologically, but developmentally, they are years apart.  My nephew is cute, he reads and writes, he plays sports - he is very athletic.  My son is also cute with a laugh that is infectious, but he doesn't talk.  He has not yet learned to read or write Braille, he walks with a limp and he still plays with preschool toys.  Am I bitter?  Not so much anymore.  That doesn't mean that the pain has gone away; it simply means that I choose not to dwell on it most of the year.  July is the one month when I struggle with this.

It's a struggle that forces me to evaluate the progress that's been made, how far we still have to go, and my attitude towards it all.  It's a struggle that forces me to sift through the baggage I've accumulated.  Thankfully, in the midst of this personal struggle, there are people to see, things to do, and places to go.  In fact, this weekend we're taking a day trip to the beach.  It promises to be a fun, relaxing day as always.

To my son and my nephew: Happy birthday, boys!  You are both very special.

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