Sunday, February 20, 2011


Here I am, circa 1978.

Here is my Owen, circa 2009.

My second grade report card: "Nancy is very smart, but she rushes through her work and doesn't always take her time." 

Owen's parent-teacher conference: "Owen is a smart boy, but he rushes  so he can get back to playing blocks. He doesn't take his time." 

1988: My racing suit clung to my skin as I slumped in the backseat. I crushed the red ribbon into a ball. Third place. My best butterfly stroke had not been enough. My dad glanced at me through the rear-view mirror, a thin smile spreading across his face. He liked that I was angry. I would use it the next time I stepped on the starting block.

2010: Owen hunched in his booster seat, his face flushed from playing T-ball. He mumbled to himself, "I didn't get the game ball. Next time I will try harder." I smiled. I recognized that hunger. 

We are alike.

We love people and books and attention.

We dip in our toes instead of doing cannonballs.

We notice when people need love.

We chat up the baristas at Starbucks.

And yet...he is not me.

He's meticulous. 

He takes direction and advice. 

He is spatially gifted.

Today, he is five years old. He's a geode. Each day, I view more of his precious, secret light. I discover more of what's inside. 

Every glimpse takes my breath away.


Muliebrity said...

I can't believe our babies are five. Sniff, sniff.

Ms.Wasteland said...

Happy Birthday Owen!

tulpen said...

Happy Birthday to your Owen.

only a movie said...

Happy birthday to your sweet boy. xo

Coby said...

Beautiful. What a great little guy. Happy birthday, Owen!

Ratz said...

Way to Go Owen.... Happy Birthday February Boy :-)

Victoria KP said...

Lovely metaphor! Happy Birthday Owen!

Lisa @ Two Bears Farm said...

Happy birthday to him! My gosh, you two do look alike :-)

Ms. Moon said...

The apple did not fall far from the tree, Mama.
Happy birthday to a precious boy.

michelle said...

This made me smile.

Happy Birthday Owen.

Happy Birth Day Nancy.


TKW said...

Love the comparison pictures! Happy birthday to your little geode. What a wonderful metaphor.

tsonodablog said...

Be still my heart....I love how you are alike and different. I love the pictures of the two of you smiling. This just made my day a little brighter. Happy Birthday Owen (and Owen's Mom!)

clearness said...

What a beautiful post. happy birthday!!

ModernMom said...

Oh Happy Birthday to your Owen:)
PS I had that same haircut!!

Cheryl said...

This was so lovely, Nancy.

I feel the same way about Sage: She is me, yet she is not me.

Happy birthday to your little big guy!

Ash said...

Oh, poo, a day late. Happy Belated birthday sweet Owen!!

They are amazing creatures, aren't they? I adore that you notice every lovely detail. I'm taking notes.

We can hold hands when kindergarten arrives. Sob.

Joanna Jenkins said...

Happy Birthday Owen!!! I hope it's a fantastic day for you.

Love the comparisons and am more than impressed you not only saved things from your childhood but could actually find them ;-)

But what I was most impressed by.... "We notice when people need love." That's awesome.

High Five to you both. xo jj

From Tracie said...

I love all the sameness and all the unique differentness all rolled up in one sweet little boy.

Happy Birthday Owen!
(a little late...I hope it was a great day)

Erin said...

this reminds me (selfishly) of what i wrote the other day about my girls....worrying about how they will be when they are older---wanting them to NOT be me, not have my experience, etc...

i am in love with this post and the photos you chose are priceless.

five. can you believe we have FIVE year-olds?

love them sitting together in the laundry baskets, too. so cute & creative. le sigh.

(Florida) Girl said...

I melted when I read this. And that photo of you in the beginning made me giggle.

adrienzgirl said...

I'm tardy to the party as always. Happy belated to Owen.

I love the way you look at things Nancy. So thought provoking. So insightful.

noisycolorfullively said...

chills. I love it!

Minivan Lover said...

How is he 5? Happy Birthday Owen :)

The Empress said...

What a great age!!

Happy Birthday, Owen. Your mama loves you so very, very much.