Monday, June 15, 2009

I went out with a dear friend of mine the other night, it was one of those impromptu moms-need-a-break things and we (as usual) were talking about our kiddos. One thing that jumped out at me during our conversation was the thought that we always notice the negative things that our kids do. I don't know how to explain it but when a mom is in a room with 100 children plus one of her own, she can pretty much ignore the irritating things the other 100 do and only notice the poor behavior of her own. We were laughing about how no one ever seems to notice the fidgeting or funny faces of other children but we are so worried about how others perceive our children. It's a stupid thing that I just have to attribute to being human-even moms are worried about whether or not other moms think they're good at being moms.

On the flip side, I have found that I am always surprised (and relieved) at the praise you receive from others. In fact, when I think about it, most people have very positive things to say about you. This makes me happy. It helps me to see you not just as my child, but as an individual. It also reminds me that even though you struggle in some things, some of what your father and I are teaching you is sticking!

It's a crazy balancing act we parents do, one foot in the world of teaching and restraining, the other in the realm of individuality and freedom. I hope that I will always stay evenly in both.

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Whoa Bill! My head is spinning as you are now officially an adolescent. I think this is where mom's need psychologists. I am fully (and painfully) aware that we are on the downhill slope of your life at home with me. It's funny but really, the next 6-7 years will ultimately be a proving ground of parental guidance. Don't get me wrong, I'm not kicking you out of the nest already, just realizing that these next years will be spent putting into practice all the things I've been teaching you to make sure you're ready for adulthood. Kind of like a grown-up test drive. Mister, I hope we're ready. Don't worry (or get your hopes up), I'll be here to correct your steering and put on the breaks when you get a little off course. That's the great thing about parenthood- our vehicle comes with controls on the passenger side!
Love you,

Monday, January 19, 2009

Dear Son,
I'm reading a book right now called "Do Hard Things" by Alex and Brett Harris. When they wrote this book they were sixteen years old. (This was only about 2 years ago.) I originally bought this for you based on a recommendation from a friend but I wanted to read it myself first. This is a great book. It will challenge you to do more than is expected of you in our society. It will explain to you where the word "Teenager" came from (it wasn't invented until the 1960's, by Reader's Digest.) It has taught me, as a mother, that it's okay to expect a great deal of you. I have felt a sense of relief that I have been right to assume that much of our current society's ideas about adolescence are incorrect. This book has offered a new perspective on your upcoming years and I am so excited by what I anticipate could be a great time of life for you and also for our relationship. When you turn 12 in the next few months, I will give this to you and fully expect you to read it. I hope that we can discuss our thoughts and ideas about your teenage years together and navigate this time in your life with as much joy and learning as possible.
I look forward to your "youth" and helping you become a wise adult.

You're awesome!

Thursday, January 8, 2009

It has been a very long time since I have written to you. Much has happened in the months that have passed and these events have shaped and molded me as an individual in ways I could never have imagined. The world is a scary place right now. There is so much taking place in so many places that I often feel overwhelmed but in all of this I have found a new humility and a new purpose. Things that were important only a few months ago are no longer top priorities in my life today. I have looked around at so many things and realized that there is much I can live without but through all of this uncertainty and fear there are several constants, one of which is you. No matter what this life throws at us, I will always have you (your siblings, and your father). It is as though my heart has opened up again to let new love in and I feel it more keenly than ever before. Will you ever know how much I love you? Life is so simple when you have someone (or many someones) to love. I promise that whether the future brings great joy or a measure of pain, I will make the most of it. I will do my best to teach you to be content and happy with what you have. I feel that this is a great blessing from a mother to a son, indeed to any child. I will consider it my crowning achievement if I can succeed. This is a great time to learn a great many things. Be aware of the good that is around you! Indeed, let us both seek out the good each day and we will all be the better for it. You are a good young man and I am hoping that I am raising you in a manner pleasing to God.

I love you!