Katy McKenna Raymond  
Personal blog of christian writer Katy McKenna Raymond in Kansas City, Missouri

Personal blog of christian
writer & fallible mom
Katy McKenna Raymond
in Kansas City, Missouri

Katy is represented by
Greg Johnson at
WordServe Literary

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it's a bittersweet and proud occasion when your oldest child turns sixteen. it feels great just to see him get that far, in one piece, unscathed-- at least to the casual observor. you're pleased he has a few semi-solid plans for his future, forward thinking boy that he is, even if they do revolve around a macintosh computer, a girl named haley, and some new sport he calls "surfing." how he's going to surf, i can't imagine. we live in missouri. he wants pizza for his birthday dinner, but it doesn't seem like enough somehow. doesn't he understand about milestones? he's my firstborn, for God's sake! so we throw him a surprise party he doesn't ask for or anticipate, but which he thoroughly enjoys. when your only daughter, the middle child, turns sixteen, you give her the "sweet sixteen" party she's been talking about since she was eleven. many sixteen-year-old girls haven't been "sweet" since they were, well, eleven-- but your girl is different. and today, all the reasons why you think so come dancing back into mind. maybe it is the dancing--- and the singing, and the theatrics, and all the hundred ways she shows her uninhibited joy. and almost shows you how she feels. some small, or not so small, part of her is guarded. you know it's being held back for someone else, and you have to wonder... will he be at the party? two days ago, my baby boy turned sixteen. it was a wednesday, so the party was postponed for the sake of partygoers too conscientious to forego their homework. we gave kevin a nice camera, since he'd been vainly wishing to take our very nice camera on any number of excursions. kev's the kind of son who, when loading the first roll of film, turns to me and says, "can the first picture i take be of you, mom?" top that. an hour ago, at 3 a.m., my oldest son took the youngest to meet up with a youth group headed for snowboarding in colorado--a fourteen hour drive. you keep thinking the angst brought on by teenagers and cars and highways and icy roads and danger signs will lessen--or maybe it will take its leave altogether. but it never does, ever. this ski trip is his birthday present, and he's really excited. yeah. me, too. what's wrong? my husband asks, when i climb back into bed, the lights off, the house silent. "nothing." so i turn away from nothing, toward him. but i can still hear, in the nothing, a blaring bass guitarist, an irish dancer in hard shoes, and a skateboarder taking down the basement. and i fall back to sleep, relieved that "nothing" still makes so much noise. and dream of three sixteen-year-olds, and all their milestones.
Posted by Katy on 01/12/01 at 03:43 AM
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