The day came and I was surprised at the sight of your pink skin, little fingers, tiny nose, and gleaming eyes. It’s not that I didn’t know what a baby looked like, it was just you were everything I had always wanted and more! Your mother cried exquisite tears of joy. I held her tight and cried alongside her at the sight of our first born child. The emotions overwhelmed and surprised me.
You are the first to crawl, the first to walk, the first to get hurt and cry! The first to capture you mothers heart and leave me filled with emotions I didn’t understand! The first to keep us up all night worrying about your sleep patterns. Your mother and I are the first to run to your aid and hold you. You are my first experiment in parenting, the first to have me realize I am a grown up with responsibilities. You were the first to become a big brother. A job you have handled quite well. The first to go to school and make first friends. The first time you stood upon a stage in elementary school it was all I could do to contain my feelings of pride. We were never first when I coached all your baseball teams, from coach pitch on up, but I tried very hard! Your team mates voted me best coach every year, which made me first place in your eyes! You are the first in our family to master not one but two instruments. Amazing! The music you create has inspired me, I am now listening to classical music for the first time in my life.
The first time you received bad grades we worked through them and though your mother and I thought we may just have to kill you so the others could thrive. We didn’t, you survived, we survived and you became the first to consistently carry a 4.0. I remember the first time I received a phone call from your athletic director advising your mother and I that you had been voted male student athlete of the year. I actually cried a little after that phone call. My face was beaming and I couldn’t have been more proud! The first time you showed an animal at the fair you did quite well. The second year you were first in showmanship! You became the first to sell an “average” show chicken for more money than the reserve grand champion. That was a first in itself. The first to ride a dirt bike and the first to ride a horse. The first to go fishing with me, the first to learn to swim and the first to climb Half Dome. You were the first to go to state with your team, and the first to support me in remembering 9/11.
Over the years son you have had many firsts. You will always be the first. For as you can plainly see being the oldest affords you that luxury. But there is something I must tell you, something that is gnawing at my heart. An emotion that makes it hard for me to breathe. Squeezes my chest, leaving me with a feeling of helplessness. Something I know you wont understand until you are grown with children of your own.
Being first also means you will be the first to drive, the first to go to college and the first to leave home. The day you leave home and head out into this crazy world is coming rapidly, and to me you are still that pink little boy with tiny fingers and sweet little eyes. To me you are still everything I always wanted and hoped you would become. To me you still need and will always want my help and protection. But I know you wont need it, you are incredibly smart and self-reliant. You will be just fine on your own without me.. Oh that “something” I was describing;
Sometimes I wish you weren’t first at everything….
You will be the first one I am going to miss.
I love you…..