On Thursday, my step-son Riley turned 10. One the one hand, this is totally shocking. I remember when he was born. I remember playing "where's your belly button?" I remember tricking him into wearing his shoes by claiming they were shoe monsters that wanted to eat his feet. I remember the battles over food. Oh the battles over food!
On the other hand, he has really grown up and is so mature and such a good person.
He takes responsibility for and is fiercely protective of his little sister, who is so loyal to him she follows him around saying, "Riley... Riley... Riley..."
He is an amazing role model and older cousin to his younger one, Trenton. This 4 year old crawled onto my lap, sighed, and said, "I love Riley." There is no doubt - the feeling is mutual.
Riley has his first REAL girlfriend. It is evident how much he likes her by how little he wants to talk about it. Sometimes though, he just can't help it. "The first time we talked on the phone, we talked for 45 minutes and 35 seconds." He's so smitten by her that he got his hair cut - at her request!
ME: What happens when his girlfriend wants him to get his eyebrow pierced?
ROY: Eyebrow? What happens when his girlfriend wants him to vote Republican?
AFTER:He thought that his new hair cute was too neat. I told him that it wouldn't stay that way for long, as evidenced in pictures to follow.
His birthday present was Guitar Hero. There was a lot of music in this house Friday night and Saturday morning. He's darn good!
Saturday afternoon, we had a party to celebrate this year of double digits. He loooves hotels, so we got a suite in Lexington and had family over.
Cousins to swim with. Uncles to play with.Wishes to make.
Beds to snuggle on.
And breakfast in the morning. (Note the hair!)I am so proud of Riley. He's so smart and so kind. We went to his play, "No Strings Attached" last week. While we were standing with Sophie, watching from the door, one of the lunch ladies said, "you must be Riley's dad. I see the resemblance." We talked for a minute and she said, "Riley is such a great kid. I mean a really GREAT KID." We knew this, but to hear it from someone else was just so affirming.
A lot of step-mom's and step-sons have issues. We don't. There's a mutual understanding there. I'm excited to be there for him as he gets older, just as I've been there up to this point.
As Trenton said, "I love Riley." Me too, Trenton. Me too.