Today, my first born son is 18 years old. There are many days that it seems as though it never happened. For this, I am sad but I am also thankful that God gave me this grace to move on in my life knowing that my child has a wonderful new family and that God is watching over them. God has given me His permission to focus on my life with the comfort that God's there and all is well. Then there are days that I swear that I can smell his hair and that I can feel his heart beating against my chest as I say goodbye for the last time. I can still feel how unbelievably sad I was when I rode the elevator for the last time. Yet, through it all, I felt and I feel God's presence and His compassion and His love for me. It is because of this compassion and love that I was gifted the opportunity to have Murphy and Briege and Keagan. His sustaining love enabled me to open myself up to the wonders of life as a wife and as a mother. What an amazing gift the Father has given to me! This chapter in the book of suffering has taught me so much about forgiveness, about true love, about self-less courage, about submission to God's Will and its fruits, and also about the joys that inevitably come after the scars of the suffering have healed. It's a wonder to behold how much He loves us to make this possible. I thank God everyday for my 18 year old Joseph. I pray that we will be reunited one day and that he will meet his siblings who have all learned about their special family member within the last two years. If he chooses not to seek us out, I pray for him anyway and I know that God's hands are on his heart and that he will, somehow, know of my love for him.
Happy 18th Birthday Joseph Kelly!