"Your life, as you know it... is gone. Never to return. But they learn how to walk, and they learn how to talk... and you want to be with them. And they turn out to be the most delightful people you will ever meet in your life." --Lost in Translation
Tonight, when I got home from work, you were still awake. I should have been upset by this, given it was almost one in the morning, but you ran to my car and you gave me a kiss and you told me that you couldn’t sleep without me. I couldn’t find mad. All I could find was a kiss back and pair of pajama pants and 14 seconds of cuddling with you before you were out cold.
I have a hard time sleeping when everyone thinks I’m supposed to, too. I understand.
For the time being, sleeping at night and playing/learning/being in the daytime is just the way we have to do things.
When I was little, my mom always took naps. I hated it. When I got a little older, I promised myself that when I had kids, I wouldn’t nap as much as she did. Then, I had you. I had your brother. Sometimes, Mommy gets tired. I know you hate it.
I used to hate it, too. I understand.
Some days, though, I can’t be the best Mommy if I’m tired. Mommy has to take care of herself so she can take care of you.
You don’t want to learn to swim. You are scared of putting your head under water. Everyone has tried to encourage you and bully you and bribe you. You told me that you don’t care if Brodie and Emma swim before you do. You just don’t want to learn to swim. I want you to learn. I want you to not be afraid.
When I was four, I didn’t want to swim. I was scared, too. I understand.
Right now, it’s just important for you to learn. It’s safe. It’ll make your summers better, I promise. If you don’t want to swim, you don’t have to, but you should know how.
You love talking to adults. You like it way better than talking to other kids. Other kids kinda bug you. They don’t let you call the shots like grown-ups do. They aren’t always the best at encouraging your imagination. They want you to share and do what they say.
I like grown-ups way better than kids, too. I understand.
Soon, you’ll figure out that not all kids your age bug you. You will get lucky, as I have been, and find a few that you actually really, really like. They will be your friends, your allies, your cohorts and they will make your life a lot more fun. They will get it. They will understand you.
You’re a good big brother. You make Brodie laugh and help him reach things and let him play with your stuff. Sometimes though, you don’t want to be around him. He bugs you because he’s little. You don’t want him in your room and you don’t want to share your stuff.
I have little brothers, too. I understand.
Hopefully, you’ll figure out that your little brother isn’t so bad. He might even be your buddy sometimes. He will understand things about you that no one else will. Not your friends. Not me. Not your dad. He will be able to keep secrets and make inside jokes. He will help you remember your past and keep you company in your future.
You are starting school soon. I think you are in for quite the adventure. There will be days, though, where you will just hate it. There will be days where I will just hate it, too. Hopefully, those days will be few. I will do my best to remind you that the good stuff most always outweighs the bad. I will do my best to remind myself. You are very smart and very funny and I know you will be better than fine.
I was always pretty good in school, but I didn’t always like it. I will understand.
You will learn so much more in school than just book stuff, though. You will learn how to treat people and how to get what you want. You will find a few teachers along the way that make you want to learn. You will figure out how to deal with people you don’t like and how to deal with people that you do. You will start to figure yourself out better.
I love you. This doesn’t feel like enough, but those are the only words you really understand on the subject so far.
I was that way for a long time, too. I understand.
I’m glad that you are the one who is teaching me how to be a mom. You’re a very good teacher. I like that we learn a lot of stuff together. I’m pretty sure you teach me just as much as I teach you, but I will always be the mom and you will always be the kid. That will never change, I promise. You are one of my most favorite people in the entire world. I want so many good, good things for you. Mostly, though, I want you to grow up to be the absolute best version of yourself.
I think you’re off to a pretty good start.