I know how you’ve waited for this day so you can precede every argument we have with, “I’m officially an adult now”. If you thought I was going to back down and bicker less, well, you’ve got another thing coming:) You’ve now officially lost the ‘he’s still a child’ advantage and things get real from here on!
This milestone birthday could’ve been the one with some nice surprises with more friends and family. Well, what do you know! This little big COVID-19 has made this one the most memorable yet, throwing a googly at the world 😉 Like your aunt quoted someone, with one more 12th grade exam still to go, your batch has earned the unique identity as the COVID batch! You know what they say about seeing the good side of things right? 🙂 It’s been a few years since I made the customary birthday posts. Was reading them up a while ago and I’m amazed at how steady and consistent you’ve been, your quirks included :))
At 18, you are sometimes 8, at times 60, but mostly, well, EIGHTEEN! I like that you dream big, but you also have a few small dreams:) The best thing about you is that you are zero maintenance and highly self-managed. But it is your quirks that I want to record here and come back to read this in 28 years along with you and your children! And yes, I’ve decided to be around that long. That is what you get for being this crazy, quirky, and an adorable young man!
- You tirelessly argue how point-less it is to fold the blankets and make the bed after you are up because one has to anyway ‘unfold’ them again in the night. A waste of time and effort, you say
- You know how much it riles me up when you wear perfume, particularly when you are profusely sweating from cycling back 4 km from a class or after a game with your friends, and wear perfume over the sweat just to irritate me before heading to shower. Yuck!
- You also make it your job to lecture me on the differences between perfume, body spray, and a deodorant.
- You somehow catch a whiff, quite literally, of the special dish I’m cooking. My attempt at surprising you vaporizes. You don’t stop at guessing and go a step further by giving expert tips.
- You find it weird that I don’t remember all the funny quotes from F.R.I.E.N.D.S or BNN or the brilliant ones from HP, LOTR, or the hundred other things you watch or read, Do you realize you are the weird one to remember SO MUCH that I consider inconsequential? You believe otherwise.
- You are convinced that any music your parents appreciate is drab and a sorry excuse for good music!
- Your idea of being ‘in’ time to school that starts at 8.15am is getting out at 7.40am and doing a sprint so you reach the school in 1 minute instead of the 1.5 minutes that it takes if you walk slowly. I’m sure that on most days, you were there before the watchman and the housekeeping folks and made sure you had the place ready before the others trickled in.
- For a tuition class that starts at 5.30am, you’d shower and get ready at 4.55am and keep gazing at the clock to time your cycle ride so you reach with at least 5 minutes to spare. Are you for real?
- When almost all your classmates took a lot of ‘study leave’ in the weeks leading up to your board exams, you decided to clock 100% attendance. You maintained that being the last academic year in high school, you wouldn’t want to miss a single day of going to school. You didn’t want to miss meeting your friends, and having fun. Besides, you’d smugly declare that this was a sure shot at securing a medal or trophy in the most important year of your high school life! Nut case!
- You still can’t handle attention well. Neither can you make small talks:)
- You are still scared of butterflies, dragonflies, and moths. Your fear of crackers is understandable. But BUTTERFLIES and DRAGONFLIES dude! Weirdly though, you are comfortable around lizards and roaches, eeeww! You’ve even be-friended that big lizard in the kitchen and strike a conversation from half a feet away!
- And the most irritating of them all is insisting on having curd rice even when there are other dishes. That you risk being stereotyped as ‘thayir saadham’ doesn’t bother you even a bit:).
I could go on and I’m sure your friends will have more to add! All that said, would I want it any other way? Nope. Except perhaps for your curd-rice fetish:) Your steadfastness, amazing sense of humor, perfectly timed quips, awareness and sensibility, and a sense of forthrightness, are qualities that I admire in you and I’m very proud of. You keep me grounded. Remember to hold on tight to these qualities that make you YOU!
On this very special 18th, I wish and pray that you are always blessed with
- a healthy body and a healthy mind,
- a large heart that’s capable of unconditional love, empathy, and kindness,
- a good sense to leave all prejudices at the door and see people for what they are and not what and how they must be,
- a good sense to treat the people in your life with love and respect,
- a deep sense of integrity that will guide all your decisions and help you choose what is right,
- rightful anger at things that are wrong but enough sense to ensure it doesn’t harbor and nurture ego and mindless, useless hate,
- abundant courage that enables you to stand up for yourself and for all those dear to you,
- to always have your thambi dote over you and draw you into a sweet hug like he did this morning:)
- to always be surrounded by family and awesome friends that make your life really rich!
Happy birthday dear son. Loads of love from appa, thambi, and amma:)