When I was pregnant, I was fortunate that my aunt threw me a baby shower. It was a lot fun. One of the “games” that we played was “wishes for baby.” Basically, everyone was supposed to write well wishes for my son on a piece of paper and my aunt had plans to put them into a binder that I could save for him. Unfortunately, several people were confused and wrote wishes for ME instead which were still nice but not exactly what we were looking for. In any case, it got me to thinking and dreaming about what my future son would be when he grew up and about all of the things that he would do. This New Year has me thinking about it all over again.
My son is now two and a half years old. He is challenging many boundaries and parenting has not been easy but he is also loving and learning so much every day. It’s amazing to watch him learn and grow. Suddenly he seems to be growing up so fast and in some ways too fast. In the past week, we discovered that he had reached the rear facing weight limit for his car seat prompting us to flip him around. We transferred him to a booster seat at our kitchen table instead of his high chair because he kept asking us to sit in a “real chair.” To top it off? My husband and I agreed that it was time to convert his crib to a toddler bed. He’s growing up so fast. Each day he is more independent. So as I reflect on how far he has come and how far I have come as mom, I’m also dreaming of his future. Here are just a few things that I hope and wish for my son in 2019 and beyond in an open letter to him.
To My Son:
- I wish you patience
My son, I love your eagerness and enthusiasm but I hope that you learn a bit of patience. You often act before pausing to fully listen to directions or before thinking through what you are about to do. You are fiercely independent and while I love that about you, I hope that you learn to take advice and direction from those who love you when it’s in your best interest. You can listen well when you want to; I have seen you do it! As they say, the early bird does sometimes get the worm but good things also come to those who wait. I wish you a balance of both – not an easy task but one I think you will learn.
- I wish you courage to be yourself regardless of who’s watching
You love to be the center of attention. You love being watched and crave the attention. You want to be the star of the show and while that is sometimes a bit of a challenge for you in social settings (where it can’t ALWAYS be about you) it is one of the things that I love about you. You are so confident that you can dance with abandon in the middle of a store or a restaurant and enjoy every minute of it not caring who is looking. I wish I had your courage and I hope to foster this more in you and hope to never accidentally squash it with my occasional embarrassment in your actions. I imagine as you get older you may become more self-conscious but I hope that your inner light and wild spirit is never extinguished and that you always keep that spark shining bright. I think you will do great things and I look forward to what you will become. Never let your voice be silenced. (Except of course when mommy just needs a short break… OK? 😉 )
- I hope that you never lose your loving nature
I love that you are an affectionate boy (even though your daddy is clearly your favorite right now.) It seems like each day as you become more and more independent and need mom less that you become a little more embarrassed when mom wants to give you a hug or kiss. I know this is natural but I hope that you never lose the desire to crawl into my lap for snuggles. I hope that you never get too big for a hug from mom who will always be your biggest supporter no matter what.
- May you never lose your sense of curiosity
I hope that you never lose your inquisitive nature and I hope that I have the patience to nurture that side of you. I love that you are curious about new things and experiences and while you are beginning to have some fears about things, I hope that you will always be curious and crave to learn new things. I hope you love to learn like me. Sometimes I get frustrated with you and I’m sorry. Last week when you became obsessed with the button that opens the library door for handicapped people, I lost my cool. I know that you were just curious and trying to figure out how it worked but I was embarrassed. I hope that you never stop trying to figure things out… even when mommy tells you to knock it off. I will try to be more sensitive to your motivations. I hope that you never stop asking questions. Even when mommy and daddy get tired of answering them I hope that you still ask them. I know that this is only the beginning as you grow and explore even more of the world around you. May I always be there to teach you or at least to help you find the answers to all of your most pressing inquires.
- May you never lose interest in the small pleasures in life
I love how you find happiness in the simplest things in life: the beauty of a flower in my garden, the potential of a simple box, a backpack that no one was using, the endless fun you can have with a single balloon (the kind that isn’t filled with helium and doesn’t even float!). Perhaps it’s your young innocence but you are able to find fun and beauty where many overlook it. I hope that you never lose that. I hope that you always take time to see the beauty in the ordinary even while your peers lose it and become jaded by the world that we live in. Never take the little things for granted. Sometimes they are the most special – a hug from someone you love, reading a story with or to someone you care about, taking a minute to tell someone how much you love them. Life is short and each moment is precious. You remind me of that every day.
I hope my son flourishes in this New Year and achieves many new things but most of all I wish him peace, happiness, and the ability to just be a child despite the world that we live in. As a teacher, I have noticed that each generation seems to lose their sense of innocence sooner than the last and I hope that my son holds onto his as long as possible. I think our children deserve to be just that- kids. Instead of constantly pushing them to achieve, perhaps there is also value in just letting them play, to be silly. I know some the most fun I have had with my son has been an impromptu dance party. I hope that those are the kind of memories that my son remembers when he gets older, not the times when I lost my cool and yelled without thinking.
Wishing each of you a prosperous and wonderful New Year. Want to read about my hopes and wishes for myself in 2019? Check out my blog post from last week here: https://rumina.wpengine.com/hopes-and-wishes-for-2019/