Dear Son, There Are So Many Hopes I Have For You...
My Dear Son,
I'm writing this while you're still small and silly and sweet and so adorably unaware... to everyone else. But to me, you're a walking contradiction. I see your tiny frame holding all your innocence like it's nobody's business. I see the little waddle in your steps like you're not fully fledged just yet. But I know it's just an illusion... that you look tiny on the outside, but inside, your potential is great.
Now that you’re growing up faster than I’d like, it's time we have a heart to heart. As you grow, so will the responsibility on your shoulders and no one will look at you then with your broad frame and your strong back and see the little guy that once was waddling around in his diapers. I see the oak you'll become... just as later, in the oak, I will still see the seed. And in the messy confusion that will be your life, this I hope for you:
I hope that you stay sweet. Some say that we live in a world full of violence, hate, and evil, dear son. Others say it's full of good. Either way, I hope your caring disposition never fades... that you hold on to it forever. That you don't fall for some sort of trickery called 'man up', fooling you to believe that harder is better. Your sweet heart is your strength, and I hope it keeps beating sweetness into you.
I hope you will be a gentleman to EVERYONE. One day, you'll be someone's boyfriend and then a husband... a father. I hope that through it all, you never forget about respecting people – men and women alike, guarding their hearts, and empowering them beyond belief. I hope that you'll be the first to open doors for others, both literally and figuratively. I hope you don't get so caught up in finding your equal that you forget that we're all equals... that would just be wasting life, honey, leaving you alone and lonely.
I hope you find success. Whatever it is you choose to do with your life, both personally and professionally, I hope you find your joy, baby. Find it and live it wholeheartedly. But don't be so focused on the big goals that you skip over the smallest pleasures. Don't tomorrow your days away when you can love today.
I hope you lead... AND follow. You’ll reach an age, my son, when it will be hard to stand up, speak out, and do it your way. But I hope when you are faced with difficult decisions, you choose the road less traveled if the one that's already paved doesn't feel right to you. Or that you'll create a new path when it seems like there's no where else to turn. And while I hope that you never follow mindlessly... I do hope that you also know when to follow. That includes knowing when to follow your heart, as well as when to follow someone who already knows your way. Because paving for paving's sake will just have you running in circles in the end.
I hope that you know that two halves make a whole. If there is a yin and a yang, you get to be both of them. If you act on your masculine side, don't forget to embrace your feminine side. If you believe in speaking out, don't forget to listen. If you see beauty in laughter, don't deny there's also some in your tears. Show those that you love your warmth and your kindness. Being a man isn’t one-sided. Don't be so quick to think softness and strength are mutually exclusive.
I hope that you find a life partner. Welcome people into your arms and your heart. Riding the ups and downs of this roller coaster called life with someone makes living it so much more fulfilling. Share your thoughts, your fears, your joys, and all that's inside your heart and your head and you will find that special person. Someone to show you other ways to love. Someone who will be there for you when you come home. Someone who will challenge you, encourage you, and love you through it all. And don't forget to do it all back.
I hope that you keep your nerve. I see you brimming with self-confidence at every new milestone. I see you pick yourself back up again when you fall. But I also know that this harsh world we live in will send you different messages. It will tell you that you aren’t good enough, or bright enough, or strong enough, or attractive enough. But you, my angel, are enough. Just as you are. So if someone or something knocks you off your feet, you just grab those bootstraps and pick yourself right back up again. You deserve that.
I hope that you never feel alone. Enjoy your solitude, when you have a moment to yourself, and relish in it. There's beauty there and the joys of reflection. But if you ever feel lonely, know that I'm a phone call away... always here for you. Always here. And if I’m gone sooner than I'd like to, know that I'll leave others in my wake. Friends, neighbors, relatives... reach out if you’re feeling blue. The world only feels big and lonely if you let it.
I hope that you never forget how much I love you. More than anything in this world, my son, I hope you never question how much you mean to me. I would swim through shark infested waters for you. I would walk across a fire for you. I would give my life for you, sweet boy, because you are my reason for living. And no matter what, I will always love you.
Sweet boy of mine, I look forward to unwrapping a little of you each day. You are my gift and my love.
Love you more than you know,
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