to my twin sons on their fiftieth birthday:
Happy Birthday. Happy Birthday to you. Happy birthday dear John, Happy birthday to you.
Happy Birthday. Happy Birthday to you. Happy birthday dear Jim, Happy birthday to you.
I never imagined you fifty years old. I don’t think of you as fifty either. If I stop and wait, I can see you there sitting in your fifty years, now. Now I see it.
You grew up. Shit. You are adults now with loved ones and children and lives and professions. You have homes and cars and motorcycles/scooters that I gave you to ride. I wanted you to be like me. And you are. And you are not.
Your manhood is there for all to see, your character, humor, hopes and desires, dreams, and…
And your faults, your failings, your Lost dreams, your waste of time and talent. You are human, like me. Tis a pity but it can’t be helped, it comes with the genes, I guess. Wouldn’t be the same without them.
But you are greater than the sum of your parts, your habits, your accomplishments, your genes, your family, your friends, your talents and your failings.
I love you. I am so proud of you. I love the fathers and spouses you have become. I love your presence and your smell. I love how the house feels when you are in it. I love how the world feels with you in it. I love how my life feels with you in it.
I give you my new mantra: I decided I had to become the man that I had wished my father to be.