In June of 2017, my husband and I obtained custody of our daughter’s two sons, Cason, and Alec. As their mother continues to battle to overcome her struggles, and following my recent divorce last year, both boys live with me full time. Other than occasional weekends with their grandpa, I am trying to raise a second set of children, and it’s only by God’s grace.
This time last year, I didn’t know what my future held, or how I was going to manage everything. The fact that I can sit here now and feel free to share received blessings is truly a miracle. I’m not ashamed to say that the prospect of being solely responsible for these two boys was probably one of the most fearful things I have ever had to face. I am so happy to say that we are surviving and are really doing just fine.
Cason is turning eleven years old this week. I can’t believe the same little boy that I held in my arms the day he was born now stands eye to eye with me. I would be lying if I said our arrangement is perfect, and that we never have trying days, but for the most part, we have shaped our life in a way that seems to be working.
The main strike against us is that both boys are so full of energy, and the fact that I’m a grandmother, and not a young mother, is taxing. I don’t handle a lot of noise well, and if patience were paper, mine would be so thin you could see through it. I have no doubt the boys have learned how to push my buttons to get what they want. But I also think I surprise them with my ability to know when they are trying to get over on me.
Alec will be nine in August. A precocious little fellow to be sure, but I’ll save my words for him closer to his special day. In honor of Cason’s birthday, I want to brag on him a little. I was smitten with this little guy the minute he entered the world. He was my first grandchild. I felt way too young to be a grandmother, but oh how I loved and still love this child.
Understandingly, Cason hasn’t always had it easy, and I believe he was made to grow up faster than he should have. For one thing, he took responsibility for watching over his little brother at a very young age. For as long as I can remember, and as a toddler himself, Cason gave the last of everything to Alec. He always protected him, put the pacifier in his mouth, gave up a toy that he was playing with simply because Alec wanted it.
Not so long ago, it got to where Alec would hit Cason to get something he wanted because he was so used to Cason letting him have his way. I think Cason finally became frustrated with it all and I remember telling him to stand up to Alec and tell him “No!” Unfortunately for me, today Cason has no problem standing up for himself to his brother. He doesn’t always let him win and he’ll gladly eat the last donut in front of Alec, just to get a rise out of him. My poor nerves.
I know I’m being partial on this score, but I think Cason was one of the most beautiful little boys I have ever seen. I even had doctors at his checkups tell me what a beautiful child he was. His big blue eyes were always looking around in wonder, taking in so much information. My favorite thing to watch him do, even today, is to watch him eat something he loves. He puts his heart and soul into every bite, and you can just see the pure joy in his face, and I still giggle when he smacks his lips with delight.
Now that he’s a pre-teen, he doesn’t want me to watch him eat, and he’s very particular about when or if he’ll give me a hug. I’m taking and giving hugs when I can get them, because the day will come when he won’t want me around as much. I get it, having ridden this train before. But if I accomplish nothing else, I want to make sure this young man knows every day how much he is loved by me, and by his Creator.
He is so smart in school, especially in Math. He can decipher problems that are so above my intellect, that he’s on to the next problem while I’m still searching for a calculator. His ability to retain information is astounding, and he knows how to do coding in video games. He is wise beyond his years, and yet he still has the tender heart of a little boy that has had to deal with things he never should have to. I admire Cason so much. He has the capacity to love so deeply, but he is guarded and careful, I’m sure for fear of being hurt. He will never realize what a great source of joy he is for me. I feel the same about both Cason and Alec.
One of my favorite Cason stories is here on the website under the Previous Blogs section. Please check out “A Good Day”, from June 27, 2021. It still makes me smile.
Well, I’ve gushed over this little man as sincerely as I know how. I hope you don’t mind if I share some of my favorite photos of him as well. Thank you for letting me brag on this beautiful young man. I’ll blink and he’ll be graduating high school. I just wanted to stop time for a moment and enjoy reflecting on my sweet Cason. Your prayers for him are appreciated.