09 September 2015


As of today, September 9th, the stunningly patient and mighty fine SML and I are no longer the parents of any teenagers. The Boy, or more appropriately, The Missionary Formerly Known As The Boy - TMFKATB for short - turns 20 years old today.

I'm not quite sure for whom this is a bigger deal, him or us. For us, it is certainly the end of an era. No more teenagers. All our children are, by law and by deed, adults and are doing the things young adults do. It's just weird not to have a teenager anymore. For him, I have an idea of what he may be going through. Like him, I turned 20 in the mission field and it was hard. I felt like I was now officially old (my gosh...the perspective of youth!) and had no idea what was ahead of me, other than a day of knocking doors on South Beach (yes, THAT South Beach - suffice to  say it was a far different place thirty years ago than it is today). I wonder if a Puerto Rican family will knock on his apartment door at 7:00AM like they did the day I turned 20, bearing frijoles negros and a cake? I'm thinking not.

It will be a good day for him. When the stunningly patient and mighty fine SML was behind the Zion Curtain last month, she made sure to drop off a birthday box at his mission office. He'll celebrate appropriately as a result. He always manages to have a good time no matter where he finds himself. That's one of the many things that we love about him.

Like his older sisters, he has brought us an immeasurable amount of joy. We are proud of him, not just on his birthday, but every day. I'm proud of the sacrifice he's making right now as a missionary. I know he'll be a different young man as a result when he is home in a year. It's exciting and it's an honor to watch it happen. I'm lucky to be his dad.

Happy birthday, son.

The King of Little Cottonwood Canyon

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