Happy 25th birthday to my son, Brandon. I swear it was just yesterday that I was anxiously comparing diaper brands, sure that the fate of my son’s happiness surely must be divined somewhere in the magical combination on sure-stick tabs and perfect absorbency. It was the first of many parenting lessons to come. I had chosen what I thought was optimal and lined them all up perfectly in the nursery (as all new mothers do), only to find that my son was allergic to virtually every diaper known to mankind (cloth included). My quest for the perfect had been quickly reduced to the quest for the survivable. I just wanted something that didn’t make my child writhe in pain.

Eventually, we got past that hurdle and a million more. One day I blinked and you are a quarter of a century old. You have found yourself a family through the most unlikely of ways, yet in some ways it is so perfect for you. The logical one, the centered one, the one not prone to flights of fancy found a way to fall for the proverbial girl next door and her adorable little boy. Now, it will be your turn to worry about diapers, wipes and the color of poop. When you’re done thinking about that you can ponder the relative value of educational TV and YouTube and social media…

(If that gets too overwhelming, just remember you barely ate anything but Happy Meals from the time you were three until you were eight, and life rolled on. You are doing just fine in Medical School. We are so proud of the man you’ve become. Happy Birthday Son.)



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