What’s so special about today?

Today is Monday, July 15th, 2013.

Our first born child, a little girl we named Elizabeth Ann, was born on Tuesday, July 15th, 1997.

Maybe you’re not a math person… and that’s ok. Not everyone is, so I’ll do it for you (eventually).

Caveat: my knowing has nothing to do with math and everything to do with said little girl (who’s not so little anymore) asking the following question every 1.25 hours for the last 6.5 months: “Can you believe I’m going to be sixteen years old this year?!?”

Not that I’ve been counting.

You may recall my tale of the head of child psychiatrics at the local children’s hospital diagnosing Beth with Aspergers (or high functioning autism), after a somewhat difficult childhood. You may recall the years of various diagnoses and treatments leading up to it. You may recall the birth defect which led to surgery to remove it and a damaged kidney that it caused.

This is not to say Beth’s childhood was worse than many others’. But it’s hard to consider yourself lucky when your child is suffering.

I’m happy to say Beth is a smart, confident, and independent thinking sixteen year old young adult today.

She may never know the depth of my pride, though not for a lack of trying. Some things are hard to express. Some things are hard to understand until you’ve stood in their shoes.

Happy Birthday kid!


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My immediate family is small, so I try not to let events go unnoticed. One almost slipped past my radar though. Fifteen days ago I got my customary alert on my phone. A birthday was imminent. That birthday is today. What I didn’t realize is it’s a milestone. My cousin is now a full-fledged, card carrying member of adulthood. It’s not a particularly exclusive organization, if you could even call it that. He’s part of that lose web of folks eking out a living, entitled by experience to start thinking of themselves as “old.”

My one and only cousin (going by the strictest definition) turns thirty today.

Happy birthday, my good (old) man!