Friday, October 16, 2009

Sweet Sixteen!

It's my first baby's birthday today! Baby no more is more like it! John Paul was born on the fifteenth anniversary of Pope John Paul's election to the papacy and the Feasts of St. Margaret Mary Alacoque and St. Hedwig. It also fell on Sweetest Day that year, and I can vouch that he is one sweet boy!

As our first child, he was certainly the one that Paul and I fretted over the most! Paul was (and still is) the most doting father to his first son! When John was a baby and he'd be in the car with us, Paul wouldn't drive faster than 15 miles an hour and would only listen to very quiet easy listening music (he's usually a fan of very hard rock!). We just couldn't bear it if anything bad would befall our wonderful little son. Of course, that extreme gentleness didn't last. By the time sons two and three came around, our house became a wild wrestling, running, jumping, chaotic playground of fun and fights!

I'll never forget the feel of John's soft baby cheeks next to mine or his sweet baby smell! I can still see him dancing to bluegrass music as a toddler. My mind can picture him peddling his bicycle without the training wheels and how I prayed that he wouldn't fall! Watching him receive Jesus for the first time caused my heart to swell with pride, and the swelling came again when he served at his first Mass, and lectored for the first time. Listening to him sing in the church choir gives me goosebumps, especially when he has a solo. But after his first-ever solo when all of the girls in his class gathered around to compliment him on his singing, batting their eyelashes and gushing praise, my defenses kicked in and I told them to scatter so his number one fan (me!) could give him a big hug!

Sixteen years have flown quickly by! Today he is taller than me and probably smarter than me as well! He's driving with great skill and will soon receive his permanent driver's license. He takes charge as the head of the family whenever Paul and I are away. He is kind, gentle, funny, fair and his faith is deep. For all of these attributes I am very thankful to God. But most of all, I am thankful to God for simply blessing my life with my beautiful son, John Paul

Won't you take a minute to stop by his blog and wish him a Happy Birthday today? You can find him at Writings of a boy discerning God's call


  1. Anne,
    A beautiful reflection on your first born. I've already been over to his blog to wish him happy birthday. Enjoy celebrating with him!
    PS- I love the quote under Mary's picture.
    God bless!

  2. Your baby is growing up! Wishing you and him many blessings on this milestone. (Do you ever feel that it has only been 16 days, not 16 years?)

  3. Happy Birthday to John! What a wonderful reflection of his life, Anne! What a wonderful son you and your husband have raised! I am sure the Lord is smiling down upon all of you. Have a wonderful weekend! God bless.

  4. You are blessed! He is a great kid. Thank you for sharing these wonderful memories with us.


  6. Oh, Anne, I read this with tears in my eyes. What a beautiful tribute to your son, and to your family, and to your love of being his mother. My own kids are on the toddler/baby end of things,and since I work with teenagers, I often wonder what my little boys will be like when they are adolescents. I pray that I'll be writing as fondly and lovingly of them as you do of your son.

    You're blessed to have him ... and he's blessed to have you.

  7. Happy birthday to John Paul ...

    And I'm praying for you today on your consecration - God bless you!

  8. It's a special day for you Anne in more ways than one! I will join Gabriella in saying a prayer for you today.

    Congratulations and congratulations!!

  9. Thank you all for your kindness and wonderful words!