37 years ago at 1:09pm my life changed forever. David Matthew Phillips was born at Portsmouth Naval Hospital, Portsmouth, VA to a young Navy ensign and his even younger (22) wife, ME!
Happy Birthday, David Matthew! We love you so very much!
From his earliest months DM loved balls--any size; any shape. He could swing a bat practically before he walked--and, he walked at just under 9 months old! He arrived with strength and coordination, and soon developed a love of anything sports--just like his dad, CA.
In fact, when JE was born almost 7 years later we never even considered that we might have a girl. We assumed we would have another little guy to go to practice with his dad--baseball, basketball, football (later soccer) and beg to be at every game. Of course, we had out little girl and all three of us agreed that our lives would have been lacking without the beauty, grace, and gentleness that little baby brought into our home.
DM was a high-maintenance, high-rewards kid. He bristles when I say that now, but it is true. He liked action, activity, and being outside. He was always on the move and always wanting more. He did fall into bed each night totally exhausted, so there was respite. And, he only climbed out of his crib once or twice--I always figured the crib was his safe haven. While in there, he didn't have to perform. Even when he moved into a twin bed he stayed put. He would, though, lean way out and peer toward the living room and say something like, "It really looks nice out there."
DM went to nursery school and then day care--the perfect anecdote for a kid who needs constant activity. Being in school focused him and he loved it--especially recess. He was always a great student throughout elementary, junior high, and high school--getting excellent grades and always well-like by teachers and friends.
Our yard on Kimer Court was filled with kids playing ball--from the first day we moved in when 5 other eight year-olds showed up to meet DM, and every day after. They played ball on the cul-de-sac, Risk in the garage, and all other activities requiring running, jumping, wrestling, and loud voices. I remember when DM was about 12 realizing that our house could not hold 3 or 4 of his friends--the kinetic energy would destroy it.
DM was a strong-willed child, but we were stronger-willed parents. I remember throwing my arms around that 12 - 14 year old and hugging him tight when he would be angry and flailing... I remember telling him that God gave him to us and required us to love, teach, and discipline him--we were answerable to God so he would not win... DM mostly was cooperative and loving and tender-hearted, but teenagers are teenagers are teenagers.
DM decided in high school to be a great first baseman and hitter. He loved football and played 4 years, but he really focused on improving his baseball skills, eventually winning a scholarship to the University of Virgina. While he finished his education at Wheaton College, he has always been proud of his UVA start. And, no one ever loved college any more than DM did. He was surrounded by baseball players and girl friends who loved him and appreciated his stories--some called him Goose in reference to Mother Goose.
It took DM a little bit after college to find his career path--but there was no mis-spent energy. God has used every thread in weaving the tapestry of DM's life. This pathway led him to Bratislava, Slovakia in the late 1990s, and eventually he met and fell in love with the beautiful and intelligent, loving and wise MK--marrying in a beautiful Slovak/American ceremony on December 28th 2002.
LG arrived May 17th 2005 and KF on January 15th 2008. Being grandparents has been the true reward. DM and MK are wonderful parents--loving, kind, and disciplined. They are hard workers and serve God with university students and athletes in Bratislava. They have a lovely home and a beautiful family.
We love you, David Matthew Phillips! Blessings to you and hugs and kisses for everyone. It's a secret, but I will be there soon! The adventure continues...