He who was once an extreeeemely chubby baby of seven weeks, is now thirteen and a half years old. A veritable red blooded American teenage boy. And he couldn’t be more remarkable, with a heart of gold and razor sharp wit.

His thirteenth birthday was overshadowed by the fact that I was in the ICU, recovering from a complicated surgery. And by recovering, I mean tossing and turning in a hospital bed, anxious out of my mind to get home to my family. I had never even spent the night away from Roux! Yet there I was, trapped on a gurney, full of all kinds of drugs, feeling awful that this would be what my firstborn remembered most about his first moments as a teenager. I’d finally had enough, and after hemming and hawing for hours, the medical staff gave in to my request and released me Against Medical Advice, which is a fancy way of saying I signed a liability waiver and went home in the middle of the night.

We mustered up the best celebration we could given the circumstances: dinner at BJ’s and a trip to Barnes and Noble. He never did blow out any candles.

So, today we celebrated again. With burgers and ice cream sandwiches for dinner. But still, no candles.

Happy Half Birthday, Emet! I truly can’t believe how much you have grown. You’re nearly half a foot taller than me, your body rapidly maturing. I remember at the end of last summer, I’d thought you’d had a cold for three weeks only to realize that you weren’t sick at all, your voice had changed! Yet despite all of the physical transformation, you remain as genuine and thoughtful as ever. You are a good person to the core, I simply could not be more proud of the young man you have become. We share a truly special relationship, and our closeness means the world to me. The past six months have been hard, for each of us, and you have been such a source of strength and comfort through all of it. You are wise beyond your years, you always have been. Thank you for being such a wonderful son, I am so very lucky to be your mama.

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