I love that guy

Many years ago, I had the great fortune of going on a very special date and was compelled to write about the experience.


The object of my affection is quite a handsome little guy.

He’s not tall – but he’s growing.

He’s not built – but he’s trying.

He has a great head of hair, however, that is thick and black.

His eyebrows are amazing – dark and distinct.

His little lips are sheer perfection – spectacularly aligned with his superior facial features and slightly pink.

He has a dark, flawless complexion.

He has a tendency to prefer wearing one-piece, footed pajamas over all other fashion offerings.

He doesn’t say much – but when he does, it’s profound.

Our date was 30 minutes of alone time over a glazed doughnut and a sippy cup of milk.

We don’t often have the opportunity for one-on-one conversation, because my date is usually being carried around by his sibling or manhandled by his cousins. So this was a treasured event.

As I sat next to my young nephew, Jay, I asked if he liked the doughnut. He nodded yes.

I asked what his name was. He simply responded, “I’m the Jaybird!”

Yes, he is the Jaybird. Our family’s little miracle guy who has learned to fly.

A few years ago, he was just a pound of hope in an Omaha hospital.

Jay made his abrupt entrance into the world much too early – but overcame all the obstacles thrown at him on a daily basis.

After a half-year in the hospital, he amazingly was allowed to go home on his original due date.

It wasn’t clear sailing from there. He’s had so many challenges along the way and still does – but he continues to conquer them all.

As we sat in my sister’s quiet kitchen, with the rest of the family gone, he noticed the gold fish swimming in a nearby bowl.

“Do you like the fish?” I asked.

He indicated that he thought the fish should be “let out” so it could run free. I explained that the fish needed to be in the water so it could swim. He gave me a puzzled look and then followed up with a reenactment of the face a fish makes while swimming.

When asked what the fish’s name was, he simply replied, “That Guy.”

I guess that’s his answer for everyone and everything.

What’s the cat’s name? “That Guy.”

What’s the dog’s name? “That Guy.”

As I laughed, he chuckled back at me and said something about me being silly. I guess I am.

With doughnut glaze deliciously covering a portion of his beautiful face, we talked about his dislike for flies, his penchant for toy cars (particularly the red ones), an itch on his wrist and how the kitties were taking a nap because it was cold out.

“Kitties said brrrrrr,” he informed me.

It was possibly one of the most intelligent and entertaining conversations I’ve had in a long time.

As we chatted, my mind wandered back to the early days of his existence and my initial wondering why God would have brought him here so early. I was conflicted, back then, as the Jaybird’s parents worried over his health and future. I had questioned why God would allow such struggles to happen or why Jay had to fight so hard just to live.

But as the furnace kicked in and “That Guy” swam in his bowl, I realized God’s intentions and the end result that is Jay.

This beautiful little boy is such a treasure to not only his family but the world. As he’s grown to the young fellow he is, he’s accrued a large group of support . . . of his family’s friends, his medical caregivers and all who have prayed for him. He’s a miracle, an inspiration, a testament to what God can provide in dire situations.

“What’s my name?” I asked.

“That Guy,” he said, smiling, as he plucked up another little spec of doughnut.

“Do you love me?” I asked.

He shrugged his shoulders because he didn’t know.

“Well, I love you,” I responded, before going in for a sugary kiss.

Yes, I love That Guy.






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