Fifteen years ago from right now, I was in labor. Just a couple of hours away from meeting my five pound, eleven ounce oh-so-breathtakingly handsome and hairy first child. In honor of each and every one of the last fifteen years, I give you fifteen things that make Spencer one of the coolest people I know:
1. His sense of humor. No complicated, deep, not-sure-if-you-get-it kind of humor here. Just straight up corniness, with a big hearty laugh on the side. If you know my dad, you know why I’d appreciate a corny sense of humor.
2. His taste in music. He has one of the most eclectic ears of anyone I know. You might find anything from Broadway show tunes to Christina Aguilera, to classic rock, to modern pop, to heavy metal on his play list.
3. His exceptional memory. He never forgets a name, a street, or a “remind me to…” request.
4. His ability to fix things. He’s been taking things apart and putting them back together again since he was old enough to hold a screwdriver. This means our house is often overrun with stray screws, nails, and various parts and pieces… but it also means he has an admirable (and useful!) skill that will serve him his entire life.
5. His loyalty. If you’re fortunate enough to gain Spencer’s friendship, you’ve made a friend for life.
6. His JOY. It just bubbles out of him. He loves life, and he wakes each day excited for new experiences.
7. His unshakeable sense of self. Perhaps one of my favorite things about him, he’s a person who knows exactly who he is and never tries to be anything else. Right now that means a person with one foot in adulthood, and one foot still firmly in childhood. A person who will unabashedly build with legoes one minute, and have an in-depth conversation with his mom about Law and Order: SVU the next.
8. His determination. Apraxia has made certain things more difficult for him… but he never lets it stop him.
9. His love for his family. If I only could have bottled all the hugs and “I love yous” he gave me when he was younger, I would be set for life. Fortunately, he hasn’t stopped showing his love for myself, his father, and all his siblings (even the little sister who often tries with all her might to drive him crazy) Over the past few years, while we were still working out all my gall bladder-related issues, he’s also always been the first to offer a sincere, “I’m sorry you’re not feeling good” even if it was the third day in a row that I’d been sick.
10. His fascination with fascinating facts. He loves to watch Dr G: Medical Examiner, Untold Stories of the ER, and a host of other real-life medical and crime shows that make a lot of people queasy. When we go on field trips, he’s right up front, intently listening, asking questions, and mentally filing away information for another time.
11. His concern for others. He has such a huge, huge heart. He’s always touched by stories of illnesses and hardship, especially when it comes to children. We’ve been praying for a little girl with cancer here in the valley for a few years now, and he continually asks how she’s doing, and reminds me to give him updates as soon as I have them.
12. His enthusiasm. I don’t think I can adequately describe just how enthusiastic he is unless you’ve seen it for yourself. Excitement isn’t an emotion he does half way and I LOVE that about him. He throws himself into new hobbies, new pursuits and new friendships.
13. His steadfast refusal to curse, or to take God’s name in vain. People are often surprised to hear this since I so rarely swear on my blog, but strong language doesn’t generally bother me. It does bother Spencer though, and I so respect that he takes a personal stand against it… so much so that when he created his own Minecraft server, one of the first things he did was install a plug-in that would filter any coarse language as people chatted. (To give you an example of how seriously he takes this, when he refers to the TV show, “Jackass” he always self-censors it as “Jack Butt.” :))
14. His willingness to face fears. As a young child, he had a severe fear of the dentist, compounded by issues with having his face touched. Thanks to a wonderfully patient and compassionate pediatric dental team, he faced his fears head-on. Today he’ll sit through HOURS of orthodontia and patiently endure fillings with nothing more than a shot of novacaine.
15. His friendship. Yep, I’m one of those moms, and proud to be. Yes, I’m his mom, but I’m also lucky enough to be his friend. And he – like the rest of my children – is one of the best friends I have ever had.