A year is 365 days, or one complete rotation of the earth, in which the four seasons are completed. And it is now, today, 21 years since my nephew was born. From the moment he came to our family, he and I had a bond. It is hard to explain, it just has always been. I spent a lot of time with him when he was younger, babysitting, taking him on trips, changing diapers, drying tears, feeding, bathing, reading to him. His first stuffed animal, The Gwummy, as he named it, was an irresistible purchase made with love. Like the Velveteen Rabbit, that thing has been loved till it’s ragged.
Through his childhood and teenage years, even while I was living in another state, I we would write to each other, though I would write more than he did. And that was OK. Children don’t often write letters but I always wanted that relationship open. And in high school when he was thinking about colleges, I suggested he come to Atlanta. And to my delight, he did.
And through the last 3 years I have been so blessed to have been able to watch him grow and develop into the very fine young man that he is today. He is young, but he tries with all his heart, he feels deeply, though he doesn’t often express it. He has honor and integrity, qualities that are so rare these days. He is brilliant. I often tease that maybe by sitting next to him some of that intelligence might rub off on me. We have great long conversations about theories of quantum physics, mechanics and such. I cannot understand the math behind them, but he explains the theories quite well and the conversations are enjoyable. He has been a wonderful blessing, and my life has forever been enriched and changed because of him. I am not only proud to call him my nephew, but proud to call him my friend.
And I look forward to watching him set the world on fire with his talent, intelligence and humor.