We were all together recently (which is rare) and took this picture.
When did that happen?
Our oldest son used to look like this. He was three when lava lamps were cool.
Our younger son used to look like this.
He wore vests and bow ties and Redskins caps on Easter.
The older one is no longer blond. The younger one has not been seen in a bow tie since this picture. Both boys loved baseball, Legos and macaroni and cheese. Those things are still true.
Now that we have a grandson, I'm reminded of the days I changed diapers on and gave raspberries to my own sons. When I was home with my children, the hours seemed long at times, but looking back...they are but a wink of one eye.
Somewhere along the line...boys turn into men. They work through challenges, try to figure out women, change jobs, move, try to figure out women, make mistakes, mostly figure out women, and settle in to the game of life.
They begin to resemble their father, their grandfathers, their uncles. Not physically (although sometimes), but in action and habit and character.
It's supposed to happen, of course, that they grow up and onward, but it kind of happens when you're not looking. And then...one day...you just see it.
With my sons, it was choosing marriage that added a new depth to their lives. They both met women who sparked in them a willingness to be vulnerable, to sacrifice, and to commit. These are honorable - and sometimes rare - traits in a man.
It's heart-warming to see.
My sons are not little boys anymore, but strong, hairy adults who give me great bear hugs, which I love, love, love. My prayer for them is that they continue to grow in tender-heartedness, courage, and conviction.
Because life will continue to throw them curve balls now and then.
I want them to know we will always been in the bleachers rooting for them.