Happy Birthday Andy!
Andrew just turned sixteen years old a few minutes ago…
Here is a little You Tube Video I put together:
When I ponder on the life of this son of mine, a welling of gratitude and love for this person in my life just overwhelms my heart.
We both almost died during his difficult birth, and for sixteen healthy years of life I must publicly thank my Father in Heaven for giving us the gift of life together rather than one or both of us up in heaven.
More than specific incidents or memories, what I think of most when Andrew comes to mind is various emotions tied to his personality.
A quiet but sometimes wickedly funny sense of humor.
Intellect beyond his years tied to an insatiable allegiance to good books. In fact this morning Jeff gave him a hardback book for his birthday present and Andy yelled, “Score!”. He has asked for books for presents since before he was in his teens and his bookworm of a Mom was only too happy to comply.
Andy taught himself to play the guitar, and he is quite good, although still shy about sharing his talents with anyone outside of his bedroom.
Andy, Jeff, and I took a road trip to Montana to see the sights and it was the most enjoyable one I have ever been on. I figured something right is going on in my sons lives when we listened to all five sessions of General Conference on the drive home, per their request. This was to balance The delight we all experienced when driving through Yellowstone blasting the rock bands Kansas, Chicago, Rush, and a few more modern bands that I have never heard of.
Andy was the only family member to accompany me to the Denver Tea Party that I organized in 2009. He helped me unload the car, set up, and then sat on the capitol steps with me in the rain while a 68 minute recording of the Constitution blasted over the sound system I had rented. He helped me load up after the party was over five hours later and we drove home shivering in the cold and rain. He never complained and was a rock of support when I needed him most, even though he was only thirteen at the time.
One night late in my pregnancy with him Paul woke up and said the baby was to be named Andrew Conrad after his great grandfather and grandfather Hatch. Both of these men were spiritual giants, and it is my prayer that Andy will follow in their footsteps.
When he was a little boy he told me every day how much he loved me, and would pick any flowers he could find outside to give to me, and he would color pictures of flowers and write I love Mom on them.
I really don’t know what I did to deserve someone like him in my life, but he has been such a steadying and calm peacemaker in our home, the type of child every mother dreams of having.
I pray that he can find his footing here in Utah, make as wonderful of friends as he had in Colorado and simply move forward into a happy adult life.
I love you Andrew!