Today he’s five.
He’s five and fearless.
He’s five and ferocious.
Five and full of frantic energy; it buzzes beneath his skin like static, and before I blink, he’s off to whatever new adventure awaits on the other side of the room, the other side of the world. Maybe he lets me go with him, or maybe he doesn’t. It’s a great honor to be invited.
He’s five and funny. Sometimes on purpose, even. He mixes up words and tells jokes and says things so unexpectedly profound that it’s hard to tell if he’s confused or Confucius in a forty pound pack.
Five and friendly. Hello to the checkout lady. Hello to the neighbors. Hello to the grumpy guy at the bank, who breaks into maybe his first smile ever, so creaky and unexpected. Five and friendly, except when he’s shy, peering out from behind my legs like he did when he was freshly upright and toddling around, looking at the big, wide world from high-up eyes for the first time. We all need someone to hide behind some days.
Five and fast. Too fast. He runs to Daddy. He runs to Bible class. He runs away, running and running. I call to him to come back, but back is not a direction kids go, so I run along behind the best I can, sometimes staying close and sometimes falling back, watching and panting from the exertion of trying to keep up.
Look at my boy, running.
He’s five, and he’s fascinating.
Happy Birthday, Caleb!