Zach was born with a tremendous interest in the people around him. As young as age two, he was acutely aware of others' emotions. I have never shed a tear in his presence without a hug, an arm around my shoulders, or his hand reaching for mine. I have never shared good news without Zach having a high-five or an enthusiastic hug for me, all while wearing an ear-to-ear grin. It's as if Zach feels what those around him are feeling.
Zach is a giver of compliments and encouragement. He's recently taken to videoing Luke's games, and I love to hear him in the background rooting for his brother. He's also the guy patting friends on the back when something has gone wrong, promising that everything will be alright. He inspires greatness rather than complaining about defeat.
Zach is a helper. He's ready with gentle advice and assistance when he notices a friend in need. He's also the boy on the field helping every injured player up, regardless of which team they're on or what's going on in the game.
Zach is thoughtful and generous. He personally selects birthday gifts for his friends, and he loves giving tokens of his appreciation to his teachers and coaches. Whether it's an apple, a picture, a homemade card, home-baked goodies, or a store bought present, all gifts from Zach are chosen specifically for the recipient. He often brings notes home from school and church, written to let a family member know they were thought of while Zach was away.
Zach prefers intimate settings to large group activities. Parties are fun, but he'd much rather play one-on-one with a good friend. He's generally found on the outskirts of a group or at the end of a line, hanging with one or two friends... He's not the center-of-attention type.
He's been this way all of his life. Zachary is a person who cherishes closeness, intimacy and relationships. I deeply admire his ability at such a young age to genuinely express love and affection, and to give without expecting anything in return. His expressiveness is a gift that many spend a lifetime cultivating. His kindness, remarkable. There are countless things that I adore about my son, but this ranks at the top of the list. He is so real, and so full of love.