When I was a kid, I would daydream about things like what my wedding would look like, how many kids I would have, what kind of house I would live in, what my job would be…stuff like that. It wasn’t until I actually became a mother for the first time that I actually formed a composite image of what I thought my kids would be like, personality-wise. Any one who has met my first child, Rebekkah, will understand how I might have assumed that all my kids would turn out this way. Rebekkah was one very serious, very stubborn, very intelligent child. I actually had to consciously teach her how to have a sense of humor. Thankfully, once she caught on, there was no stopping her. She loves to laugh. But because she was so intense, I naturally braced myself for my second child.
My son’s birth was just one mishap after another. The poor kid. The pregnancy was not going smoothly, and he was finally born just under 2 months premature. I had lost quite a lot of blood, and was unconscious when they loaded my newborn onto a helicopter and sent him to a large hospital in Dallas. His name was supposed to be Michael Anthony, but according to my ex-husband, somewhere along the way, while I was heavily drugged, I gave him permission to change the baby’s name to William Harold. Of course I had to drugged to allow this!!! So, for the month that I was recovering, my son was in another hospital being called Billy Bell. Not an auspicious start for the little guy. I changed his nickname to DJ. It stands for “Don’t Call My Son Billy Bell”.
I won’t go into every hill and valley this little boy traveled, but I will point out some severe hiccoughs in his childhood. Besides having colic most of his infancy, he had dyslexia, ADHD (if you believe in this disorder. I don’t), and at 12, he developed Type 1 Diabetes. Life simply handed Dj a ton more crap than it did Rebekkah or Caitlyn.
On top of everything else, Dj is sandwiched in birth order between Rebekkah, Leader Extraordinaire, and Caitlyn, Rebel Leader. I spent a lot of time worrying over this little guy, until I realized that he had a far superior gift than either of his sisters. Dj had tons of friends. Now, I would like to differentiate between friends and acquaintances. Most people we meet in life are going to be acquaintances. However, if we are lucky, we’ll have some true-blue friends show up as well. Dj had this aura about him that draws people to him instinctively. And they tend to be real friends. They almost never disappear from his life. They are there to lend a helping hand when needed. They actually take an interest in what is going on in Dj’s life. They love him. I recently told my daughters that I do worry about them sometimes. I worry that they will get their hearts broken, or they won’t find the jobs they want, or that they won’t be able to pay rent. But I don’t worry about Dj. He is guarded by one of the most powerful shields there is — a gentle heart. He doesn’t put people on the defensive. When people see themselves through Dj’s eyes, they like what they see. He doesn’t judge. He doesn’t humiliate. He simply accepts.
I am so proud of all of my kids, but I have an extra little twinge of pride when I see the kindness in my son’s eyes.
Dj, I really am so proud to be your mother. I thank Jesus for you!! I love you.