What do you get the man that has it all; someone that has traveled the world, performed on the biggest stages in sports and has a beautiful family?
How about a trip down memory lane!
For longer than I can remember, you were my right hand man, my teammate, the little trouble maker that looked up to me and just wanted to do everything that I did. We played soccer, basketball, baseball, football, tag, hide and seek, boxed/wrestled, swam and played every Nintendo game that we could get our hands on. Being the big brother, I had to take it easy on you at times or you might smack me across the head with a whiffle bat out of frustration. Thankfully for both of us, I didn't have to take it easy on you for too long.
From a young age, it was obvious that you were an exceptional athletic talent. By the time you were 10 years old, you and a few of the other little brothers were able to keep up with me and my friends. Soon enough, you weren't just coming to watch me at my tournaments, you were playing in them yourself. Before we blinked, I had to start calling you my "younger" brother because you weren't my "little" brother anymore. Now we could train together, start soccer camps together, share our careers together and occasionally get in trouble off the field together.
As your career ascended, you made it a point to share all of your experiences with your family and friends. We all got to travel the world and live the emotional roller coaster that comes along with this beautiful game, as if we were on the field with you. It would have been easy for you to let the success on the field get to your head. I'm happy to say that you never forgot where you came from (#909/The Ranch) and have only changed for the better. We survived the bad hair-dos, the earrings, the epic facial hair, shaving dad's beard and now we get to embrace our own distinguishing markers known as grey hair.
Now that we are both fathers and husbands, I look forward to watching our children grow up with their siblings and cousins. Even though we live across the country, on the rare occasions when the kids get together, there is an instant bond. They have a sixth sense and that only comes from being family.
Happy 40th Birthday and welcome to the club!
Diego, Kellie, Bella and Luca