“Dear Husband” on our Son’s 18th Birthday

Dear Carlos,

I have been thinking about what this week means to me and I’ve been trying to make sense of it all. Our baby turns 18 years old on Thursday. Can you believe it? I know, I’ve asked you that a hundred times lately. How is it possible? And then I get annoyed with myself for asking such a cliche question.

Where has the time gone?
How did this happen?
It happened so fast.

I remember like it was yesterday when he was 18 months old and I would look at women like they were bat shit crazy when they said things like, “it goes by so fast.” Nah, it was slow as hell during many of the past 18 years.

18 years. That is a long time. And look, we are still married! Isn’t that awesome? We had no clue we would make it in such a beautiful and loving way. No one believed we would either and look at us…we showed them! Not that we were trying to prove anything. 😉

So back to this time thing and the fact that we did it. We accomplished what is known as “raising a person.” We raised a human being into life. This little life that took us completely by surprise has turned into his own being, with his own personality (even if it does resemble mine a lot). He has his own passions, his own beliefs, and his own distinct preferences. He is his own person. He came into creation because of us and in spite of us at the same time.

I know you know…I really like this person we created. But when I think about it, did we really create him or did he help us create our own selves better? Because of him, we dedicated ourselves to each other. We committed to doing the best we could for him and ultimately, that meant taking really good care of ourselves and our marriage.

To be the best mom for him, I needed to get honest with myself about the work I wanted to do in the world. I went on the journey to find work that lights me up so he could believe it is possible to follow your dreams. I allowed myself to fail openly and vulnerably so he could see that failing is part of life. We just get back up.

To be the best mom for him, I needed to focus on my health and well being so I could take care of him when he got sick and needed me. I made sure that included my mental health as much as my eating and exercise habits.

To be the best mom I could be, I needed to challenge you and our marriage to make sure we were in it for the right reasons and not just because.

Not just because we birthed this child together.
Not just because society said it was the right thing to do.
Not just because it felt easier than the alternative.
Not just because we could…but because we really and truly wanted to be together on this life journey.

The more I thought about this milestone of ALEX TURNING 18, the more I turned to you in awe and love and gratitude.

The more I think about celebrating his life, I realize how much I want to celebrate our life and our marriage.

This milestone is exciting for him, yes, and I’m happy for him and the world (boy can vote now!). But really…wow, we did this, baby. We did this.

We showed him that he is worthy of love and joy just for being himself, just for waking up in the morning. We showed him that because we believed that for each other. You never had to do anything to be lovable. You simply are. And I simply am.

Thank you, Carlos, for loving me so deeply and so well.
Thank you for being the best Father you can be.
Thank you for caring for our marriage, our family and mostly, thank you for caring for yourself and loving yourself. You model it well. You honor the journey. You hold sacred our role as parents and as humans on this Earth.

As I thank you, I thank myself. And I thank us, as the united team we have become.

Cheers to Alex’s 18th birthday!
Cheers to us!
Cheers to our love!

Te amo, Sara

The birthday boy…

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