One fall day in 1995, I received a phone call from my wife. She told me that “Julian had something to tell me. He was coming soon.” I stared at the phone as if she had lost her mind. I asked her to clarify what she meant. Her next sentence literally changed my life forever. She said, “Julian is coming. I’m pregnant!”
I stood there absolutely speechless. Was she kidding? Dear Lord, me a father? God help the child. She interrupted my feelings of anxiety as we laughed together and decided that we would celebrate by going to a special restaurant. We raised a toast, non-alcoholic of course, to the journey that was to come.
That day marked the first day that I knew my boy was coming into the world. We talked about naming our son Julian Lance (names of both of our grandfathers), but I never thought much about the name until that day. Since that time, there has not been one day that I don’t speak his name and give thanks to God for my mighty son’s life. He is an amazing man.
On Friday, he will celebrate his 21st birthday. In dad years, I have been called a father for well over 21 years. Julian changed me. No one ever called me a parent before he came into being, and no one will ever not call me a parent ever again. For that, I am truly grateful.
We all have events that occur in life that shape us and define the course that we will take. For me, becoming a father was that life changing event. I learned how to feel deeper, grow stronger, and love more passionately than I ever imagined. Children bring us that gift.
Today I praise God for my son, Julian Lance MacDonald, who continues to amaze me every day. I hope to continue singing with him for the rest of my life. And while I am at it, I give thanks for my incredible wife, Cazandra Cecelia Campos-MacDonald, who took a risk and agreed to be my wife. Together we have formed a family that is capable of amazing things. Thanks be to God for all of His generous gifts.