Ben turns 18 today (as of 11:13am, I suppose). Any number of changes in the eyes of the law have arrived: among them, he now gets to register for the Selective Service (seems like yesterday that I was doing that myself), and he’ll be voting on Tuesday. Those first few days of his life feel so near in time–Martha beginning labor soon after trick-or-treating was over, holding this tiny, wrinkly thing in my arms, trying to settle on a name (Ben had been a serious contender for a while, but we didn’t make a final decision for more than 24 hours post-delivery), videoing Martha walking into our house with him for the first time.
And these days? He’s in the middle of applying to colleges; November 1 turns out to be the deadline for “early action” on applications at a few places he’s considering (he did get the bulk of things submitted over this past weekend). A couple of places are asking that Ben do an interview as part of the application process, so there’ll be that to address in the coming weeks. I’m curious to see how it all shakes out.
Last year on 11/1 I posted about his 7th birthday, one that was bowling-themed. For his 8th, we took a number of his classmates to a place in Lexington where one can jump/bounce/swing around on stuff and dive into a huge pool of foam pieces. I’ll spare you pix from that event, but will show off the cake that Martha made. It’s a scene many of you will recognize:
Of course, Halloween and the boy’s birthday are closely linked at our house. Last night, I shared on Facebook a photo of Ben from the night before he turned 8. It’s probably the coolest costume he had, made with love by his mother:
Alas, he tripped and fell not long after starting out on trick-or-treating, damaging a number of the cups glued to the front. Nonetheless, that box is still stored in a big bag up in our attic.
Happy birthday, Ben, and welcome to your adulthood. I know you’re going to make mistakes along the way–we all do–but my wish for you today is that you commit fewer of them than I have and that you learn quickly and well from those you do make.
This song has been running through my head the last month or so (if only for the title and not its lyrical content), knowing that today was coming. James discovered it before I did; he told me about it during one of my trips back to Lexington in 88. “I’m an Adult Now” is not my favorite song on the decently-good Love Junk (that would be “She’s So Young”), but it’s the one that got this Toronto band noticed for a short while.
“Gotta get up and take on that world/When you’re an adult it’s no cliché, it’s the truth.”