My sweet Pedro was born on May 1, 1996. (This photo was on his 14th birthday.) He would have been 16 today. It’s my director’s birthday today too – they were always so lovely to invite Pedro to celebrate with them. It’s been bittersweet these last two May 1sts to wish Steve a happy birthday and hear about their celebrations without being able to celebrate it with Pedro as well.
I miss my precious boy terribly today. And every day. And today, his birthday, I wonder. How tall would he be at 16? What would his voice sound like now that it’s changed? Would we still be getting along so well or would teenager-hood have brought us some challenges?
(Pedro on his 13th birthday)
Would we be living together in a small home off the center by now? You see, a few months before he died, I met with my directors to share with them how bad things were in his home with his mom. We prayed together and they were very encouraging and supportive of me trying to find him another place to live (several of my friends locally have smaller homes for children) or my moving off base and him living with me. That would likely have led to having a few other boys living with me in my own home as well, our own little family.
Just after that conversation, I went home to the US for an extended visit with my mom. I had begun dreaming, praying, and talking with people about options to pursue our own home together. I don’t know if his mom would have agreed.
I never got to find out because on September 20, 2010, my sweet, precious Pedro died by drowning in the pond near his home.
Oh Pedro – I miss you. I miss your laugh and your great big smile. I miss how easily you smiled and laughed in spite of difficulties and challenges. I miss our conversations about anything and everything. I miss singing to James Blount’s song at the top of our lungs, even though we didn’t know who he was. I miss playing Yahtzee and telling you if you beat me you’ll get no breakfast! I miss making you your second breakfast, lunch and dinner to make sure you got lots of good food to eat while you were here with me. I miss knowing you could fix anything – my phone, the dvd player, the car stereo. I miss how much your friends loved you – how the house got full of adolescents for a change when you were with me. I miss watching you sleep. I miss your tender heart and compassion for others. I miss telling you you can’t make babies til you’re 25 and have a job and a home and a wife! I miss buying clothes for you and marveling as you’ve grown. I miss having English language workbooks for you – I’ve given them all away now. I miss banging our heads to Saturday Night's All Right For Fighting in the car. I miss finding new places to go and discover together. I miss you playing mahjong on my computer. I miss praying with you, on the phone every day and when I would drop you back home. I miss hugging you and kissing you, amazed you still let me do that in front of your friends at 14! I miss introducing you to new things: food, places, ideas – you loved knowing everything you could. I miss your love for me. I miss being able to pour out my love for you.
Pedro you were my most favorite person in the whole world. There’s no one I’d rather be with than you. I miss you honey lovey.
(For new readers, Pedro was my “special boy” here at the center from almost the moment I arrived in 2003. I felt God’s blessing to pursue the possibility of adopting him, even though all things natural were against me in that endeavor. In the process, we found his mother and family so it was no longer possible for me to adopt him and he moved to live with them six months after we found them, in November of 2007. We became closer than ever in those three years, even though we didn’t live together. He was not my son by adoption but he was the son of my heart. You can read more about him on this blog by doing a search for Pedro in the upper left hand search box.)