Wednesday, August 24, 2016

A Letter to my Son

atheist parent
I'm one of those lucky mothers.
I have a son who is so lovely, lovely in such a way that I must reach my hands over to him to outline his cheek, run my fingertips over his arm, touch his hair. I'm drawn to him. To the smile in his eyes. To the gentleness of his ways. to the way he pulls me in close and puts his forehead onto mine. To the way he looks into my eyes as though I am the only person on the planet.

He makes me laugh every single day. He makes meal times the best time of day. He sits near me and holds my hand. He softly whispers to me I love you, Mom. His heart is so like his father's heart. Incredibly kind, incredibly good, incredibly guileless. He is sensitive. He is confused when others are careless with feelings. He sees my moods, just as his dad does. He brings his sunshine and his pain to me and offers it like a rare gift. He is my boy.

When he and I talk he asks me about my day, how I am, what is on my mind because he really wants to know. 
He really wants to know...

I know that the days are shortening and the time will come when he finds his own way, creates his own home, makes his own family. How is a mother to let go? Though I also look forward to those days of his adulthood; he will make an admirable adult. Sometimes I fear for him. Will the world crush him? Can he bear the heaviness of disappointment and pain that is inevitable when one lives on this planet? Is he resilient enough? Actually, I know he will be fine. More than fine. And I want to tell him these things:

Dear John,
You can do this. When the world is showing its heartless face, you can handle it. Though it is a challenge, you will make a wonderful adult. With your heart and head you will dot your "i"s and cross your "t"s and figure it all out. Always remember that the answers are there for the finding. Read and research and figure it out. You're great at that. So much of the world seems to work against us for some reason. It's nothing personal, you can totally handle it. Find your people and face it.
Choose peace. People will come into your life and will challenge your peace. You and I have talked about this again and again. Remember, you get to choose who and what you keep in your life.  You have the power to make choices and to decide what to keep and what to let go of. Always choose authenticity and peace.
I'm proud of you. Incredibly proud of the way you move through this thing. You notice things. You take risks. You approach people and events with openness and with effort and that leaves you open to the possibilities of darkness in the world, but that doesn't scare you. Instead you feel compassion in such depth and strength and my heart catches just a bit. You have a magnetism to you that draws people to you. Use that well. Believe in yourself. I'm so proud of you.
I believe in you. I believe in that moment when you finally see beyond the pain and confusion to the hope and the self-reliance. I believe in the wonder and power of your incredibly heart and mind. I believe in the ability of your thoughts to bring you into the light and up onto the mountain of your life. I believe in your ability to choose healthy things. I believe in your creativity, your perseverance, and the beat of your own drum. I believe in you, Son.
You are loved. You are SO loved. Your dad and I will always have your back. I hope you always feel it deep within your heart and know it from all that you see. And if a day comes when you feel alone, know that my love for you is as eternal as the star stuff from which you and I are both made. Look up at the stars and know beyond a doubt that Dad and I are still with you. Always. If I can get to you, I will get to you. Always in all ways.

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