Happy Birthday My Little Chicken Wing

Today marks another milestone in our house, with my second child hitting the big 1-8. Legal, an adult, and all that comes with it. Exciting stuff.

Today is also a day for my husband and I to sit back and reflect on an incredible journey. From the day we found out we were expecting him, barely five months after welcoming his brother, this child has been full of surprises. Raising him was about learning something new every day, and nothing that applied to his siblings really did the trick with him. He needed us, as his parents, to think differently. And I don’t think I would be the parent I have become without his being who he is. Of my four children, he has challenged me the most. He taught me that a one size fits all approach to parenting doesn’t really work, and isn’t fair. From the time he was just a newborn baby he made me throw out the rule book and forget all notions of “good” and “bad” babies.

There was a very telling moment when he was just two weeks old. He was lying in the baby rocker looking up at his Grandmother and I. After studying us intently for a few minutes he gave us the most beautiful, angelic, REAL smile. When we expressed joy and surprise he smiled even more. This came after two weeks of life with a newborn who refused to eat or feed with any pattern, rhyme, or reason. {Obviously I expected far too much too soon, but none the less, he was demanding}. Seeing that smile I can still remember saying to my mother in law, “this one’s going to be cheeky, but thank God for that smile, it will save him”. She agreed, and those words turned out to be prophetic.

This spicy little olive of mine showed us exactly who he was from the very first day. He was going to be fiercely intelligent, creative, funny, and would always {always} think outside the square. He would demand every bit of patience and understanding I had {plus more}, but would also be THE MOST fun. He has made our family and friends laugh so much we have literally peed our pants.

School was tricky because he did exactly what we want our kids to do: he questioned everything. He challenged every teacher he ever had, was demanding more stimulating work at the age of six, and he was the source of about 99.9% of phone calls and letters I received from school. He always wanted to know why, and he held his teachers to the exact same standards they asked of him. He gave his all to the teachers who showed him that he wasn’t just a number. He is now at the end of that road, and after much soul searching and debating back and forth he knows where he wants to go. He is frighteningly good at what he loves, and all I wish for him is that he can follow his dreams.

What blows me away the most these days is his talent. He’s lucky to be able to take his passion and be awesome at it. The music he makes isn’t even music I’d usually listen to but I absolutely love it, and I know he will only continue to get even better at it and even more creative. Apart from the usual things every parent wants for their child, I want for him to be able to make a living from his music. I want that more for him than anything I want for myself, he is that good.

So, my Ante, here you are. Eighteen. And believe it or not, I am probably just as happy as you are. Happy that you are finally an adult, happy that you are working hard and pursuing what you love, happy that you are a talented, beautiful soul who has so much to offer. And I’m as proud of you as I’ve ever been. You will never be anybody’s fool, and I love that. You don’t take shit, and I love that. You are talented and know where you want to go in life, and I love that. It has been the absolute best ride of my life, you made sure of that with your nutty sense of humour and kooky antics which have been some of the best moments in our family. Most of all I am so very glad that I got picked to be your mother.

So keep your head down just a little longer and you will kick the HSC’s butt. Then you can party. {The Grey Goose is on me 😉 }.

Wishing you a very happy birthday,

Mum. xxx

  1. “this spicy little olive of mine”-so sweet.

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    1. That was what he called his little brother for a time. Very cute.

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  2. What a wonderful, well written and heart-felt piece!

    Congratulations on making it! My youngest brother just turned 18 himself and is in the midst of HSC exams right now. Such a special age, on the cusp of the rest of their lives.

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    1. Thanks. It is an exciting time, and it’s been quite the ride. glad we’ve all made it sane, lol.

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      1. It is so cute! and I think the whole story maybe got me a litttttle teary eyed.

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  3. Congratulations to both of you. He sounds like a wonderful young man and you have obviously been a great Mum to raise him x

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    1. Thanks Michelle. He keeps life interesting, that’s for sure.

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  4. Tears in my eyes… I might be a little emotional with two boys of my own, one 2 and one 12 weeks. It breaks my heart (in a good way) that someday they will be 18 too. What a great tribute to your son!

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    1. Thank you so much. I’m jealous of you, I loved the days mine were that small. Enjoy the ride! X.

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  5. Happy birthday to your spicy little olive! And best of luck to him for his HSC and beyond 🙂

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  6. […] 16 is also one of my sons’ birthdays and since I wrote him a very public birthday post last year I shall just say a very happy birthday to a very special young man, who was yesterday […]

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