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Thoughts on Turning 32

I'm 32 today.

Two years older than Mike when he was frozen in time. I'm smarter, no taller, and likely a few pounds heavier but he remains unchanged. If I'm lucky, I'll continue to get older but he'll stay 30 years old forever.

Birthdays haven't been so easy for me.

We've celebrated a few of them this month - family came over and enough cake was had for rest of 2023.

But the older I get or my family gets, the closer I am to more change. Changes in my boys' independence. Changes in their appearances. Their smarter, taller and leaner.

Dante's outgrowing toddler sizes and writing happy birthday cards himself. "Happy Birthday Pop. Love Dante and Dominic" It amazes me, even with the occasional backwards "D" :)

I notice Dominic squirming out of my arms sometimes, eager to run and play. It wasn't too long ago that I had to make every meal one-handed. Now he's outside playing with neighbors in the backyard and dribbling a basketball on his own.

Change is hard. Even the little things. Should we continue swim lessons? How about Karate? Where will Dante go to Kindergarten?

What would otherwise be a small decision or change to a normal brain becomes a really, really big one to a brain that's experienced trauma. So I've learned.

Each seemingly insignificant change is a reminder of the much bigger change we've already experienced.

I'm trying to practice what I preach: that reaching another age is a gift. It's a privilege. Each day older is an opportunity to learn, grow, and make a difference. It's another day surrounded by the people you love. Another day to walk outside and breath in the fresh air.

Not everyone is granted another day.

Birthdays can be hard, but they're also a gift - and this year, my 32nd birthday was pretty darn special. <3

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