My firstborn is a teenager! wow, it is hard to believe it has been 13 years since I gave birth to that bald, beautiful baby. That silly cliche, “how time flies” is never more true than today as I reflect back on the 13 years Chace has been alive. Chace was the best baby a mom could ask for, which was doubly nice for me since I was too young and too clueless to be pregnant!! He was a great sleeper (as long as he had his paci), he ate anything you put in front of him, he wasn’t afraid of strangers and would let anybody who expressed an interest hold him. He behaved wonderfully when we went out to a restaurant, or out shopping for hours. He wouldn’t fuss when I insisted he wear a hat, because I thought it looked cute with his outfit. He talked and grinned at anybody and everything. As he got a bit older and more independent, those traits of his first year just got better and better. He just became even more adorable as he soaked up new experiences like a sponge. After his first word came out, (ball), it was game on! All things remotely round in shape were balls……the moon, street globes, oranges, meatballs, berries…..and of course, he wanted to throw them all. He was ready for TBall at 2 years old, I think! Once that first word came though, his vocabulary exploded, it seemed like he was trying new words out every single day. I would wonder, ‘now where did you pick that one up?’ The first 4 years of his life were as much a learning experience for me as it was for him. I was able to see the world through a child’s eyes again, and I felt like a different person. Making mud pies was so satisfying again, I felt like I was 4 as well. Then Todd came along and changed our lives forever. Now, here was a guy who was ready to step in and be the dad. Chace did not lack for a positive male figure those first 4 years, of course he had his Poppy!! But it is different to have a Dad, a Dad in the house to play Pokemon with, a Dad to watch cartoons with, a Dad to go fishing with. I felt like we had won the lottery or something, that I must have played our cards right in another life or something. Now, I had someone to be by my side as I tried to raise Chace to be as much as he could be, the excellent man that he is destined to become. He is so grown now, it is mind-boggling sometimes to listen to his voice getting deeper with each day that passes. Every time I go to buy him new clothes I feel a tug in my heart as I moved from the toddler department to the kids, and now sometimes even in the men’s department. I am immensely proud of the young man that he has become and am waiting in suspense to find out how he will put his stamp on the world.