As Wilks was about to turn one, I had one of my better ideas to make him a build a bear, and I asked all of his grandparents and his uncle along with his father and myself to write him a letter to go in the bear to be opened on his 16th birthday. He has always had the bear and he knew one day we would cut into it and see what was inside. He came to me last night and asked if he could go ahead and open it, and I said of course as I was anticipating it myself. Two of his grandparents are gone now so I knew it would be awesome for them to get to wish him a happy 16th birthday from heaven in their own words. As we cut into it, I couldn’t help but begin to cry as I could still see my chubby little one year old in his perfectly smocked (by yours truly) birthday bubble and his chenille birthday hat as he opened the bear for the first time! Everyone tells you time flies, but it was at this moment I realized just how fast it truly does as he stands 6 foot 2 today and has become an amazing young man. He first read his Poppas note that reiterated the same love he gives Wilks daily. Then he came to
His late paternal grandfathers letter. He wrote a letter that I don’t think I will ever read without lip quivering tears. He also gave him an Auburn key chain, pen and a $20 bill for his first gas purchase. Part of the letter read “The choices you make today will effect you in the future and also the life of your future wife and children. Make wise choices. Be yourself! Be careful! Be happy! Life is beautiful! God gave us a wonderful world! Do your part to keep it that way! Keep your cool when everyone else is loosing theirs! And the last of the wonderful advice! Practice your free throws! The word Free means just that! Automatic!!! I always told your dad I did not expect him to be perfect but I did expect him to make his free throws”
We moved on into his Dads letter which was full of love as was my mother’s sugars and his uncle Chips. I wish I could share them all because they were that good!! The love we have for our children as soon as they arrive is automatic just like Those free throws Granda wrote about! Some days we make them all! Other days we as parents may feel defeated like we r missing all the shots! There are the days we are tired and sometimes we just give in! There are the days we feel like we are just messing up our kids with our own insanities! Well, Guess what? We all get messed up one way or another! Your kids are going to be as good as they want to be and as good as you show them to be! They do as well as you do! There are no perfect parents and no one expects you to be perfect, but you are expected to love them and my dear friends that is just as automatic to all
Of us as the free throws should be! Love is FREE!! On the days, you don’t feel like throwing the ball or building the fort, Just love them! That’s what is the most important! I may not have been the perfect mother but I have loved both my kids perfectly and unconditionally! Some days I was better than others! That’s just life! One thing I can say is I have enjoyed my kids and had tons of fun with them! They will remember that! Im positive! As I read this letter I realized that the things I wanted Wilks to learn over the past 16 years haven’t changed since that day 15 years ago! I have done my very best to teach him not by telling him but by showing him! I’ve done the best I could do to be an example to him of a good person, and by the grace of God I couldn’t ask for a better young man to call mine! He truly amazes me with his wit, perspective and intelligence! I will end with the letter he read aloud last night from me. A mothers love never dies and never changes and continues to grow!
“Happy 16! It is so hard for me to believe tomorrrow you will be 1! Wow!! What a fun and exciting year we have had! U are the answer to so many prayers! We wanted you for a long time. I LoVE you more than anything in this world. We are putting These letters together in a special bear for you to open when you turn 16! Please know that you are such a special person and sooooo loved! Some advice I want to give you!
1. Always be yourself!
2. Always tell the truth even when it’s not easy! One lie will always lead to another.
3. Be a good friend and you will have good friends! Listen and care! MAke an effort to go to things and do things for people!
4. Never try drugs!! I am so proud to say I never did! They only lead to trouble! It is cooler to not to them!!
5. Be happy and have lots of fun! Life is so fun! Enjoy it!
6. Pray and trust God! Through him all things are possible!
7. You can be anything you want to be! Aim high! I know at one you are super smart! USE it!!
8. Be so safe when you drive. Lives are in your hands. Don’t make foolish choices! Never drink and drive! Call us before you do!
9. Be good to girls l! Treat them nice! Do sweet things! Compliment them and notice things!
10. Always remember I LOVE you my first child! You are amazing l! I am always here for you!
Just some motherly advice! Hopefully this will be fun at 16! I want you to know how much I love your smile, your claps, our tiny chubby feet, your hugs and kisses and your sweet arms reaching out for me! You are so beautiful! I bet you are a real looker at 16! Your daddy and I hug and kiss you all the time! We thank God everyday for you! Happy 16 and all
My love forever and ever!
I love you, mom