Dear sweet boy of mine,
As I sit here holding your hand humming your favorite hymn, to help you fall back asleep after being called into your room by your cries, I can not help but stare at you. Your whole entire life has only been 4.5 years of mine. All your days fit into my entire highschool career. Yet, I feel as though I have been doing this mommy thing my whole life.
Your sweet little eyes blink while they are closed and you take in a deep breath as you drift off to dream world. That deep sigh brings me to tears as I remember the doctors rushing around you frantically just moments after you were born and torn away from my chest. Completely distracted by nurses and doctors attending to me and asking me questions I was unaware of the lack of breathing you had yet to make. Your first cry was short and then became labored and I was later informed that you needed help to breath for 11 minutes before you were able to do it on your own again. How close we came to that day being the worst day of our lives.
I put my hand on your chest to feel you breath in.
While my hand raises up and down on your sweet little chest wrapped in the blanket you picked out because it has forest animals on it, so many memories are brought to mind. Memories of us holding your hands so you could walk around church while the pastor was preaching, because you wouldn’t stay in nursery and you wouldn’t sit still on our laps. Memories and our first swimming lessons with you. You would scream if we tried to put your face in the water yet you didn’t want to be held so you would wiggle out of our arms and inevitably submerge your face. Then you would cuddle up close as we warmed up in the hot tub. You would slowly drift off to sleep as I chatted away with the other moms and dads, each of us bragging about how amazing our little swim champions were.
Memories are amazing and horrible all in one beautiful package. They bring up moments of joy and triumph as well as pain and suffering. They are a picture of our past and cause us to take glimpses into our future. My memories often make me dream of what you will be like when you are older. Will you be the man I have been praying for you to become? Will you be honest? Will you put others first? Will you be an amazing chef and a handy man around the house? Will you marry? Will you invite me over for dinner? Will you call me? I know I am sounding needy but this is coming from the mom who has still yet to sleep a full nights sleep since the day you were born.
I am the first to rush to you when you are crying at night. I am the one who helps you in the washroom when you can’t find the light. I schedule all your outings and appointments and playdates. I decide what you eat and when you eat it. I chose your clothes and even when you put them on and when you take them off. I decide if we play outside or inside. I choose when you get a haircut and how it is done. The ball is in my court, some might say. Your days are controlled by my calendar. But as I learn to give you space will you decide to invite me along? Will you allow me to be apart of your days when they are no longer under my control?
Time is such a thief.
You will grow and my importance will diminish. Once you would have come to be for the answers to a question but now you will go to a friend. Once you would have cried on my shoulder when you skinned a knee or someone wasnt treating you as they are supposed to. Now you will deal with it alone. Once I was your everything. At one time I was all you needed and you couldnt imagine life without me. I do not want to even think of how that might change. I am going to be honest, my sweet boy, it breaks my heart to even consider that one day you will shy away from my embrace. One day you will stop running into my arms or plead me to tickle you until you cry. One day you will stop telling me your “cuddle tank” is empty and that it needs to be filled up. One day you will not hold my hand as we cross the road. One day you will stop begging me to play with you.
I can honestly say I am not ready for that day and I am thankful it is not tomorrow. I am excited for who you are going to become and what impact you are going to have on our world and the lives of those around you. For now I just want to keep you and your cuddles all to myself.
You are my greatest accomplishment and you are not mine to keep. From the day you were born I have been slowly training myself to let you go. Slowly letting you gain your independence. You are my Son. You are a little piece of my heart unprotected walking around in this world. This world scares me. Loving you makes me so vulnerable to be broken for life. Loving you opens my heart to potential for the greatest loss any Parent can have.
My healthy, strong, brave, creative, thoughtful, and magnificent little boy. You will one day be a man. Will all these moments spent making memories with you will be all I have from our relationship? Moments to cherish. Moments that I hope will take over my dreams and spiral around like an amazing documentary of the life of a man who started as a sweet little boy curled up on this mother’s lap after a bad dream.
Sleep sweet boy and hold my hand. Although my arm is going numb and I am longing for some alone time. There are enough days in my future , God willing, that are spent alone without you in them. I will look past all the chaos and frustration I may have and just cling to your tiny hand while it still fits inside of mine. I will let go of today in hopes of a new tomorrow where I can be the very best mom you deserve and you can grow into the very best Man God has designed you to be.
good night sweet boy, good night.