I wrote this letter to my son earlier this school year, just days before he was set to start kindergarten. I previously posted it on my personal blog, but thought I’d share with all of you. It’s important that we, as educators, take time to put our jobs aside and focus on our families and on self-care. School years fly by in an instant. As they do, so do the most formative years of our children’s lives.
Before you get back to planning next week’s lessons, take some time to cherish your loved ones and soak in all the love.
A Letter to My Son
I sit here in awe of just how quickly five years have passed. I know it’s cliché to say, but I literally remember everything about your sudden arrival into this crazy world.
It was July 28, 2012, and your poor mother was so uncomfortable. We were still a couple of weeks away from your predicted arrival, but your mom wanted to get you out of there as quickly as possible. In fact, she decided to eat a ton of Indian food that fateful night. You see, legend has it that the spices used in the preparation of traditional Indian meals can actually induce pregnancy. So, your mom took a chance! And it actually paid off!
That night (the wee hours of July 29, 2012), I was jolted awake by the startling screams of your mother. I groggily listened as she told me her water broke! To be honest, I can’t say I completely believed her in that moment. After all, you typically only hear of dramatic water breaks (pregnancy speaking, of course) in movies or books. The odds of a sudden, natural water break are actually quite low. But sure enough, your mother was right!
Your mom hastily sprung out of bed, and ran into the bathroom with a noticeable mix of excitement and fear. I, on the other hand, tried mightily just to wake up. I do, however, vividly remember your mom opening the bathroom door moments later only to find me standing there, rubbing my eyes and yawning, next to our kitty, Gracie, as we stared at her for some kind of direction. I’m not going to lie to you, son, I had no idea what to do!
Long story short, you came into this word 21 hours later, just after midnight on July 30, 2012, by way of C-Section. It remains one of the best days of my life. Holding you for the very first time, your eyes wide opened and looking straight into mine, was just as goosebump-inducing as it sounds. I’d never felt such love for anyone up to that point in my life. (Don’t tell your mom. Definitely don’t tell Nana. Or Papa. Or Auntie.)
Over the last five years, you have become one of the most sensitive, creative, inquisitive, and undeniably stubborn young kids this world has ever known, and I could not be more proud of you. I know this “letter” is going on way too long, but I just want to highlight some of the memories that I can’t help but look back on as you begin this major milestone.
- The way you smiled for every single picture as an infant. With those puffy little cheeks of yours, you gave us an incredible memory with each flash of the camera.
- The feeling I’d get as you’d crawl right toward me, stop, smile, and stretch out your arms when I’d pick you up at Debbie’s Day Care.
- The sound of your laugh. It is the reason why humans have the ability to hear. It’s perfection in every way.
- The way you look out for your little sister. I’ll never forget your 4th Birthday Party at Davis Farmland. You were so terrified of the free-roaming goats. But, later in the day, when said goats began heading right toward your sister, you forgot all about your own fear. You stepped right in front of Sadie, arms outstretched, blocking the goats’ path and ensuring that she remained unharmed.
- Your persistence. Whether it was learning to ride your bike with training wheels to discovering how to play with that damn fidget spinner, you have never given up on what you’ve wanted to accomplish. My goal as your father will be to nurture that trait. Life is hard, but if you’re willing to give it everything you’ve got, you’ll find much happiness.
- Your love of Star Wars. I didn’t mean for the obsession to happen, but I’ll admit, I didn’t stop it from happening either. I’m over the moon knowing that future Comic Cons will see me in attendance with my best friend.
There are so many wonderful stories that I want to share with you, but for now I’ll wrap things up. I just need you to know that I’m so proud of you. You are destined for great things. I hope you never change who you are. As you go through the public school system, you’ll be tempted to be someone you’re not for the sake of making friends. Take it from your father, don’t fall for peer pressure. Be yourself, and be happy for who you are and what you stand for. If you do, you’ll notice people will flock to you because, at the end of the day, we all just want to surround ourselves with great human beings. You, my son, are one of those great human beings.
Keep smiling, and enjoy kindergarten!
I love you more than you’ll ever know.