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Charlotte Lankard: His name is Jacob — Birthday wishes for a new teen

For his 13th birthday, an Oklahoma grandmother wishes her grandson a life of balance.
BY CHARLOTTE LANKARD, For The Oklahoman Published: April 8, 2014

His name is Jacob, and he is my youngest grandchild. This month he will turn 13 years old — a teenager.

I have never been responsible for him. I’ve simply had the pleasure of watching him grow and develop his own distinct personality.

I want him to be happy. Common sense tells me he will have some problems and rough spots along the way — and some have already happened.

I have watched in amazement his resilience, his ability to call it like it is, his willingness to face challenges — all of which speak of a loving heart, a good brain and good parenting.

I worry at times about the chaotic world he is inheriting. It seems more out of balance than at any time I can remember.

Balance is important. I want Jacob to experience it. And so for his 13th birthday, I wish him a balanced life.

To work and to rest. To study and to play. To disagree and reconcile. To feel afraid. To feel safe.

To achieve for himself and to support another’s dreams. To be strong and to be tender. To be bold and to live life to the fullest. To be cautious and to temper the adventures with good judgment and consideration.

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