Today I turned 50 years old and I'm still trying to wrap my head around that. I'm the same age as Walt Disney World, the microprocessor, the CAT scanner, soft contact lenses, Fed Ex and Mariah Carey. Yikes.

As I cope with being on planet Earth for half a century, I took a moment to look inside a box my mother kept ever since I was born with the title "Our Baby's First Seven Years" printed on the front. When my mother died in 2005 and I cleaned out her apartment, this was among many of the items I took with me that she had kept for a very long time.

Townsquare Media - Jeff Parsons

I knew some of the things I would find inside, but I was surprised by quite a few others. Of course, there are the standard things every mother keeps a record of after she gives birth to a child like the card with the baby's name, date and time of birth, weight and length. 7 pounds 3 ounces sounds about average to me.

Townsquare Media - Jeff Parsons

 

They of course keep the hospital bracelet. That's me. "Boy Parsons." The WCH is the initials of Warren C. Hazelton, the doctor who delivered me and just about every other baby born in the Oxford Hills from the 1960s to 2000.

Townsquare Media - Jeff Parsons

What I didn't expect to see were three $2 bills. Two dated 1953 and one 1963. I can only guess these were given to me when I was born by my grandfather on my mother's side. He was a bit of a coin and currency collector. No, they aren't worth a lot.  I looked it up and could sell the three of these for a total of about $20. Nah.

Townsquare Media - Jeff Parsons

At the bottom of the box, I found this.

Townsquare Media - Jeff Parsons

Hair. My hair I can only assume. Brownish-blond 50-year-old baby hair. There was a piece of lined paper folded like a small envelope which I think is where this fell out of.

The final thing I found was what surprised me the most and brought a tear to my eye.

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Dammit...it's bringing a tear to my eye again as I type this. That's my mother but that's not me. That's my nephew Noah, her first grandson. Noah is 20-years-old now and she would be so proud of that kid.

She never got to meet her second grandson. My son Jake was born a year after she died.

It doesn't surprise me at all that she kept this photo in the box that she saved her first son's birth items in, putting it there 30 years later. I found some of the things from when my brother was born in there too.

Today, at 50, I am just 7 years younger than she was when we lost her. It's hard to believe that much time has passed and that I haven't gotten that call from her saying "Happy Birthday Jeffrey," for 14 years. I miss you mom.

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