Happy 25 Big D (or as I like to call him, lil’ GnGn)

dane 25 ninedane 25 fourdane 25 eightdane 25 3dane 25 sixdane 25 fivedane 25 twodane 25 onedane 25 sevendane and laura wedding one (3)I always find myself waking early on my children’s birthdays.  My mind and heart are so full of thoughts, memories, love, pride, respect, and every good thing.  As per usual, my words seem inadequate.  How does a mother express what is in her very blood, DNA, and soul?

Both of my children were very intentional.  the thought of pregnancy and birth, let alone a lifetime of raising a child almost paralyzed me with fear.  God, the Universe, whatever you choose to call it, knew I would need a nudge in order to ever bring the two most amazing people ever (and I’m not biased, nor do I see them with “mom eyes”) into this world.

Jake and  I married in August of 1991 and KIDS, children, pregnancy were NOT on the radar.  I was entering my junior year as a vocal performance major, and Jake was at about the same place in his Portuguese degree.  We had determined to postpone children until we both graduated, perhaps even longer.

In September of that same year, (yes, a month later) while sitting quietly in the Provo temple,  a seriously loud, persistent voice came to my head.  Shouting that I was supposed to have a baby.  NOW.  I sat there, kind of stunned,  but I KNEW I was supposed to get pregnant, KNEW.  Like on a cellular, no questions, no fear kind of way.  I’m guessing that God and the Universe figured this is what I would need to ever take the plunge on that type of commitment.

You can laugh, think I’m naive or crazy or a brainwashed Mormon kid, I don’t really care.  My blog, my story.  So, I talk to Jake, he agrees, and a little over a year later,  Dane Frederic Olsen entered my world.

Knowing my son as I do, I’m pretty convinced that persistent voice was him.  He can be a real pain in the ass when he wants something. If I don’t respond to a call or text with the appropriate speed, I will be bombarded with a series of pings, “ma, ma, ma, ma, ma”  You get the idea.  This kid extremely persistent, and will be an amazing attorney.

When Cai was just learning to talk, she had trouble pronouncing “Dane”, so she would follow her big brother around with adoration, calling out, “GnGn”  (Dane Dane).  Even though she can fully articulate the word Dane now, we still delight in calling our big, stoic, viking, GnGn.

Like most siblings, Dane and Cai had their rocky moments during their growing up years.  However, when recently discussing the ME TOO movement with Cai, she mentioned how Dane has always stood up and protected her, even when she could not stand up and protect herself.

I have seen this fiercely loyal and protective side of my son over and over again.  With his grandmother, with his mother, with his sister, with his wife, and more.  This is one of his defining characteristics.  He stands up.  He steps up.  He does not stand idly by and watch abuse happen.

Finally, this has been a year of change, growth, excitement, and difficulties for my son.  He has handled these challenges with grace, wisdom, courage, and integrity.  I have mad respect for that.

Happy 25th to the son who has had my heart since before the day he was born.

I love you more than tunkintell.

Mom (big L)




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