“Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, and comes down from the Father of lights, with whom there is no variation or shadow of turning.”
Cole is a boy, end to end, and it was God that made him that way. We, of course refine the process by partaking in activities the boy is interested in, which routinely involves singing country music and driving Dad’s truck. At three years old, the boy is alarmingly good at both. I tag along, of course, in case he runs into trouble, but he’d be the first to tell you that I make a better backup singer than lead.
A couple of nights ago, the girls were out doing something girls do. As I string these words together, I can’t recall what it was precisely, but Cole and I found ourselves with some time to burn. So, we climbed up in that old black truck, fired her up, and kicked off the evening’s festivities with a rousing version of Randy Houser’s song, “Like a Cowboy.” Cole knows every word by heart and belted them out like his life depended on it. I hung with him for the first chorus, but I was by no means a match for the boy. I deferred to the young troubadour and spent the rest of the song grinning and wishing Ana was there to take it all in with me.
After singing away a good-sized chunk of A1A, I found a spot locals call the Jungle Trail. I put her in 4 wheel drive, lit up the spotlights, and went hunting for some puddles to drive through. We saw some squirrels, a bird or two, and one very concerned Bobcat and Cole was just like a hound after a rabbit. All his toddler troubles and mine faded away in the roar of that big Ford engine, running critters and flying mud.
Somewhere down that long, remote, and muddy trail, we stopped to do what men enjoy the freedom to do in the bush. Aiming at some leaves, we talked about the night and our shenanigans, and he could not have enjoyed it more. Out of ammunition and our bonding moment sealed as tightly as our zippers, he mounted the growling black beast and I snapped this picture, partly for him to make his sisters jealous, but mostly for us to remember forever more.
The whole ride took less than a couple hours and it only cost a little time and gas, yet it will always be a part of our memories together. There were no expensive theme parks or elaborate gifts. It was just a Son and his Dad laughing at things only boys would laugh at, making big messes we certainly shouldn’t have, and singing those good old country songs together for all we were worth.
He looks at me differently now because of that night, and we have memories that we will cherish for years to come. And every time we get a minute to spend together, we make the best of it, and grow even closer.
Cole and I are inseparable. Yes, he loves his mommy as much as a boy can possibly love any human being, but he loves his daddy too, and we have something special between us only dads, and little boys can have.
I love my Son and pray with gratitude over him daily.
And I thank God for bringing him home.