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Robbie entered the world thirty years ago this evening, around 11:30 at night. We were thrilled to have a son, feeling this completed the family. As with his sister, we had no idea what to expect. We obviously wanted him to thrive and be successful and we’d support him, but we weren’t going to fill him with our hopes and dreams. We’d wait and see what would happen.As he grew up, he was strongly connected to Katie, and they shared so much, but he was also very much his own person. He loved to work with his hands, playing with K’nex or blocks. Later, he would be the one to work beside Deb assembling furniture, happy to help.He was resistant to reading, afraid he’d be like Kate, with a nose buried in a book at all hours. Later, when he was ready, he had a slight disability that made it more than a challenge. However, he loved stories and when he discovered audiobooks, devoured a handful repeatedly.Our world of comic books, science fiction, and fantasy became his world and he considered the Hunt Valley Inn, host to Shore Leave and other cons, his second home. Early on, he demonstrated his ability to navigate its hallways and we admired this, once our hearts calmed down.He had his guy friends, but seemed closer to the girls, counting on two from elementary school through the end. He was gregarious, funny, loyal, and welcoming. He was also definitely a romantic.As he transitioned from teen to adult, we waited to see what would capture his imagination and set him on a path. As with most things, it was taking time, causing us some concern but he didn’t seem overly bothered. He was busy doing things. Living his life.Nearly ten years ago that path came to an end and all we’re left with, beyond too few cherished memories, are the what ifs. He’d be thirty today, no doubt working, but where and at what? Would he have married or found someone special? So many unknowns, so many possibilities.He’s never far from our minds and today especially, his spirit is close to us.

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