On your 12th year

Tomorrow you will be 12. A number that honestly makes me squirm. Your almost a teen-ager, and while I suspect your teenage years will be a little more mellow than your sisters, it still makes me uneasy at the thought. Two teenagers. In one house. But we still have another year or so before we are forced to cross that bridge, so why cross any earlier than we have to?

People often tell me how “Meek and Mellow” you are and how “Easy” you must be (although I cant honestly be sure what they mean by that). I sometimes see that side of you, the side the 6 years ago, you were all about. But arent anything if not all about danger and adventure, the more, the better. But that isn’t telling you anything new, just confirming what you already know to be true, what no one really seems to understand about you, the “Meek and Mellow” one.

You aim to please. Yet at the same time, you thrive with adventure.

At almost 12 years old, you have what appears to be, a well rounded sense of adventure, humor and reality. Something I hope you never loose, or let others take. Or take advantage of. While it seems that the drift between you and your sister has grown deeper, your relationship has also grown deeper, in a more understanding, real way. No longer do you fight over the toy, or the top bunk. You have your things, she has hers. But there is an underline understanding that seems to go without saying that if you were in trouble, she would be there in a heartbeat, and you in an instant.

You were forced into the real world, away from fairy tales and underground lives at 6 and have come so far. You don’t hold yourself back, or feel sorry for yourself in any way. I have never heard you complain about the things life has handed you, the cards you have been dealt. You seem to have an understanding that runs deeper than your short 12 years, and I look forward to seeing it go deeper.

You are 110% boy, but only because I refuse to believe that you are almost, no longer, a boy. Your sense of wonder is something I can only be amazed by. Everything you do is done to the fullest, except your school work. You have never been a fan of school, and have always managed to just scrape by. Choosing to admit that “Its just not fun.” Ah, yes. Everything must be covered and coated and drowned in “Fun” to make you even look its direction.

Fortunately for us, everything so far, hasn’t lost its appeal, and everything always has a twist on it when you are involved. You race ahead, yet always stop, look back, and make sure. What are you looking for? What are you unsure of? So strong in your senses, you are an asset to anyone you come in contact with.

You make me proud to say Im your uncle.

But there are a few things you should know about being 12:

– Turning your shorts inside out does not qualify them for being clean.
– This doesn’t work with socks either.
– Showering WILL make you less. Smell less.
– 5 minutes in the shower is plenty long. I don’t care how long you spend in there, so long as you come out cleaner than when you went in. If not, then I don’t know what you did in there, but it wasn’t shower.
– Don’t ask me how I know when I tell you something. I was your age once, I know its hard to believe.
– Another day of school will not kill you, but if you keep stalling and make me take you once again, I might.
– Keep your head on your shoulders…and your eyes in your head. And you will go far.
– Keep it up, your doing good, but feel free to slow it down a little bit too. Just watching you makes me head spin sometimes.
– And finally, enjoy being 12 as much as I hope you did 11.

Happy Birthday….You are “D-Man”

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