I never ceases to amaze me how different all my children are. The family thread runs through them and connects them in varying ways that make them part of the colorful eclectic that is our family, but each stand as their own unique prism. I believe this is true of all people and all families. I must say though, it is probably most marveled at from a parent’s perspective. How is it that my four children became so magnificently unique? My son Noah says that each took different pieces of me with them. To some extent that is true, but it hardly captures the uniqueness evident in each one of them. I am sure this phenomenon is evident in all families – we are bound by love, commitment, and genes, yet we all arrive with different gifts and sensitivities.
Today is my son Cory’s 26th birthday. Cory is the third child in my child quartet. He is the most artistic soul in the family. While he is both like and unlike his siblings, he can more easily recognize the ways he is different than the ways he is the same.
Cory was the singular baby of the family for many years – 11 to be exact. By the time Cheyenne came along and assumed the role, he was heading into the space of big brother and the oldest child in the household and was less concerned with the displacement as the baby of the family. Once his older siblings, Sarah and Noah, were out of the house he was for all intensive purposes the man of the house. Hence, even while not the baby of the family, he was still in a lead role.
After Cory grew up and went to live on his own he became the third in a line of older children who lived on their own. Going from number one twice (from baby in the family to man of the house) to number three in the pack has never been fully accepted by Cory. He still holds on to his number one position whenever he can and he does so unabashedly. This generates a great deal of humor in the family unit. It also sometimes causes his siblings to protest and roll their eyes, but it is uniquely Cory and part of what we love about him.
I have watched Cory grow into himself over the past handful of years. He has pursued his interests and honed his abilities in a number of areas. I have learned from observing him that he never does anything he enjoys halfheartedly. It is always a matter of great introspection, research, and effort – he emerges himself in his interests. He is a voracious learner in the areas that interest him and happily ignorant in areas that do not. He makes no apology for focusing so much of his attention where his interests lie, he lives his life from where it feels genuine for him. We call him the elitist in the family which he embraces because that label that puts him in the number one slot; but in reality, the label denotes something more complex than that – it captures Cory’s commitment to live his own truth without compromise.
I have should have know long ago that he would find his place in the world in some sort of self-expression. He has always found ways to craft his own experiences in ways that feed his soul with little regard for the ways other perceived them. I believe his ability to create authentically is part of his strength in architecture. In design, he has found a place where his potential can be nurtured and expanded.
A piece Cory made for me as a gift
While Cory’s creativity and commitment to self-expression are more unique to him, he carries the same sense of humor, sensibility, and family commitment as the rest of the clan. Therein lies the thread that runs through them all – the core essence of the family unit. They all shine individually and by doing so add light and color to the spectrum that is us.
Happy birthday #3 child, #2 son, and #1 creative soul in the family – we love what you add to the mix of our family unit! xoxoxo Mom, Mike, and Cheyenne
Day one thousand three hundred and forty-nine of the new forty – obla di obla da