Sixteen at Last!

When I was growing up, my sixteenth birthday was a Pretty Big Deal. I remember looking forward to it (like, I assume, most of you) for a long time. The family rule in our house was that you couldn’t date until you were 16, so there was that to look forward to, coupled with the possibility of driving. (Though I was in no rush on the driving front. My brother got in a serious car accident when I was around 15. I saw what that did to an automobile, so I wasn’t jumping at the gun to get behind a steering wheel myself.) I had a big party with a bunch of friends. It was a good time.

Fast forward 25 years, and my son is turning 16 today. How is he celebrating? Well, he can’t go see his friends, so no party. There’s not even the chance of driving school, so no car is in the works. How do you socially distant dating?

So how is he celebrating? At the moment, he’s working on an English assignment that’s due soon, so . . . I don’t think it’s an incredibly wonderful birthday for him. I feel bad that his experience is being overshadowed by all this sickness and drama in the world, though at the same time, I’m grateful that our family continues to deal with it without major impact. We don’t go out much, but Denisa and I are still employed and we’re all healthy.

How does a freshly-made 16 year old spend his time (when he’s not working on English projects)? Tomas is a big fan of video games (Overwatch and Animal Crossing are two current favorites, I believe), reading, and he used to be very active with after school activities, back in the day. We’ve been working our way through Stranger Things in the evenings. No job yet, though he’s worked as a part time swim instructor in the past. This summer was looking packed with camps and trips, so it wasn’t looking like he’d be able to work. Now it just looks like no camps, no trips, and . . . no jobs.

What a time we live in . . .

Anyway, if you see Tomas lurking around online somewhere today, make sure to wish him a happy birthday. When this is all over, we should have one giant bash just to celebrate.

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