Once upon a time, there was a little boy named Rory, who was born in California. He had great big eyes, smiled all the time, and slept right through the night on the first day home from the hospital. When Rory was only two months old, his Mum and Dad took him to meet his Grandma and Grandpa. He smiled and let out a giggle in the airport, the very first time he saw his Grandma.
A few weeks later, Rory moved far away to Berlin, Germany where he stayed until he was almost two years old. Sometimes Rory and his Mum would ride on the German train, or on the Subway, and go for adventures, but sometimes they would just go for long walks. Rory learned how to walk when he was only 8 months old, and was very curious. Often he would like to go in the evenings with his Mum to the duck park and throw old bread in the water and watch the ducks and the fish. That was very exciting to Rory!
When Rory was almost two years old, he moved with his Mum back to Michigan because his Mum and Dad got a divorce. But soon his little brother would arrive and he would have a brand new best friend, and someone to teach things to and play with! When his little brother arrived, Rory and Ian and his Mum stayed for five months with his grandparents, who he had now nicknamed “Beema” and “Papa.” Beema and Papa loved their new names.
Rory soon re-named his Aunt Nancy to “Nanny” and just loved to play with her and her dog Feldsner. Nanny would always bring Rory his favorite candy, Junior Mints. She would show him the box, he would hold out his hand, and say, “Peeeez, Nanny? Peeeez? I have one?”
Rory also has an Uncle Larry who always had a fun party on Christmas morning. Rory always looked forward to that!
Rory loved jumping off the steps at Beema and Papa’s house, and loved “tuning” with Papa on the kitchen floor. When Papa would come home from work, Rory would sit at the table and giggle with him. I think that was the most favorite part of BOTH of their days! At night, Papa would tell stories about his dog, Chum, to Rory and Ian, and rock them in his chair. He would promise to eat sardines with them one day when they were big. They shoveled snow together, and cut grass together, and wrestled on the floor with each other. Rory and Papa were the best friends ever!
At night, Rory snuggled into bed and slept well in home made flannel pajamas that Beema would sew for him. She told him he slept well because his pajamas were made “with loads of love.” In the grocery story, Beema would teach Rory (and Ian) letters on all of the things she put in the basket. And she read them books, like “Mrs. Bryce’s Mice.”
After a few months living with Beema and Papa, a trailer nearby became the new home for Rory and Ian and their Mum. They played hockey in the street, climbed their tree outside, and had the coolest sandbox EVER, that their Mum got someone to build for them with seats inside of it and a top and lots of toys inside! And outside in the bushes, Rory would find pennies and nickels and dimes and quarters that his Mum told him were spilled from the pots of gold that the leprachauns spilled when they moved around in their bushes. Rory liked to tell his friends about the leprachauns that lived in his flowers, because everyone knows – they only live in the flower beds of Irish people 😉
Rory’s Mom always felt bad about Rory not having a Dad around, so she really wanted to work from home so that she could be home with him and his brother all of the time. So Beema and Papa watched Rory and Ian for a couple of years while their Mum went back to school again to learn how to do medical transcription. Then, they never had to have a baby sitter or go to day care, and their Mum was always at home, even when she was working! They loved that! Rory’s mom saved and saved and saved so that they could buy a condo, and after five years in the trailer, she bought a nice townhouse a few miles away.
Rory and Ian had their very own room, and made lots of friends in the neighborhood. It seemed like everyone who was in Rory’s neighborhood was also in his class! Soon he made his very best friend, Alex, who lived down the street. As Rory grew up, he played many sports – basketball, baseball, football, and his poor Mum always seemed to get hit in the head with the balls at some of his games. But she still kept coming to yell and cheer for Rory!!
When Rory went to middle school, Beema and Papa moved nearby. He was so happy that he could see them all the time now! They were so close that he and his brother and friend Alex could walk there anytime they wanted. Sometimes, they would stop there just for a drink of water when they were out playing. Not long after his Beema and Papa moved there, Papa got very sick with cancer, and only a few months later he died. Rory was very, very sad and cried. He knew Papa would want him to have a suit, so his Mum took him to Sears and bought him a really nice suit. At the funeral, all of Papa’s favorite men were there to carry his casket, and they took good care of Rory and allowed him to help carry Papa’s casket. This made his Mum very proud of him, even though she was very, very sad to lose her Dad. She was grateful for the men who cared for Rory that day.
When Rory was old enough to work, he got a job at the condominium pool, and he was able to swim free and could even walk to work! He worked there in the summer with his friend Alex, and in the evening they would get all of their friends together and go to Alex’s house and play games at their kitchen table.
When Rory went to high school, he made another new best friend named Holly. Almost right away his Mum and Holly’s Mom knew that they loved each other. Soon, Holly and Rory and Alex and Cecelia were all hanging out together and playing games and swimming, and doing all kinds of things together. They even went on mission trips together. It didn’t take long to know that Holly and Rory were going to be married one day. It was fun to watch them take pictures together at Prom, and Homecomings every year, knowing that someday there would also be a wedding!
In 2014, Holly and Rory married, and have spent the past two years finishing school. Rory has been studying Special Education at Wayne State University, which has been a dream God put in his heart long ago, when he was in grade school. Rory has always been kind and considerate, and is a lot of fun, attracting all sorts of people to him.
Just before graduating from college, Rory and Holly found out that they are going to be parents, and this made his Mum so very excited to be a grandma. She still remembers ironing football decals on t-shirts for him before he was ever born!
Today, Rory is a college graduate with a teaching degree. He is currently teaching 8th grade English in a nearby school district, and is looking for a full time position in the fall. He is going to be GREAT! And just like he has always done, he is going to make a difference in the lives of many, many young kids (and some old ones too!). He’s also going to be an incredible Daddy. His Mum knows this better than anyone, because she raised him, held his hand, taught him to walk, and talk, and say thank you. She taught him to always thank veterans for their service, and to open doors for people. She taught him to send thank you cards, and to be kind and considerate, and humble, and always to do what is right. She did this because it is what Papa and Beema taught HER to do when she was a little girl growing up.
Tonight, Rory’s graduation dinner will be fun. Beema, and Nanny, and Rory’s Mum will be there, and they will probably cry – but that’s only because they are all very, very proud of Rory!
Rory – IPOY. Love you, Mum xoxoxoxoxo, infinities!