Daulton turned 10 last month and is officially in double digits. I asked him on his birthday if he felt older and he said no, but a few days later I asked him again and he said he did feel older. I guess it takes a few days for it to sink in that he is now 10.
In the weeks leading up to his birthday, I found myself thinking back to the first time I met Daulton. I had met Matt through my roommate Alison and had heard he had a son. Alison and her parents ran a youth puppet ministry and invited us out to watch their Easter performance. Daulton was 3 at the time and like he is today, a mini Matt. Midway through the performance, I looked down the row to see if he was enjoying the puppets. What I found was Daulton staring directly at me and studying me. Now I know he just likes to people watch, but another part of me wonders why he was staring at just me. There were other strangers he could have stared at, but he picked me.
People have asked me how Daulton is doing with being a big brother. There has never been a better big brother in the history of big brothers than Daulton. He plays with Cole, helps with feedings, consoles him when he's upset, let's him play Xbox (he gives him the extra controller to play with), and he can't go by Cole without giving him a hug or kiss. They are just as enamored with each other now as ever.
I've said it before and I will say it again, I hit the jackpot with Daulton. He is my stepson and I will never be his mom, but he is the one who made me a mom. He teaches me how to be patient and kind, even when I don't want to be. He reminds me to share and to put others first. He teaches me to see the good in people and to not overthink things. He reminds me to be in the moment and to enjoy the now. He is smart, funny, patient, and kind. I could go on and on about how wonderful he is, but that would probably just embarrass him.
I can't believe he is 10 and I am so grateful I get to be a part of his life!