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You are Here: Home > Love Stories > Second Chances > To My Son

To My Son
by Kristi
Dear John:

This morning when I woke up it suddenly struck me. Never again would I walk in hesitating steps to your crib. So sure that you were fine, yet terrified I would find that you had succumbed to S.I.D.S instead of sleeping soundly and safely through the night. And I missed you.

When I stood at the kitchen sink this morning, drinking a cup of hot chocolate I realized it had been years since I had to share my marshmallows with a little scamp tugging on my pant leg, asking for "More mallows mommy!". And I missed you.

Around 11:00 a.m. this morning, while cleaning the bathroom I tried to remember how long it had been since I last mumbled and grumbled while washing away traces of a little boy learning to "Go potty like my daddy." Or how long it had been since I was last rudely awakened at two A.M., after stumbling into the bathroom in the dark, only to find myself shockingly wet because the ring had been left up. Again. I never could decide how long it had been in terms of years, just in heart beats of love. There were enough for them to change into heart beats of tears because I miss you so.

Whenever I see Mothers standing at the bus stop with their little boys, I smile because I remember the hundreds of trips we had made to the bus stop and back, your tiny little hand in mine. And I remember the horror that I felt the day you announced you were old enough to "Go it alone." It wasn't the fear of you being out there on your own. It was the knowledge that you had taken one more step toward your manhood, one more step away from me. That's a feeling every parent knows. It's a mixture of pride and pain. Now when I watch my neighbors walking to the bus stop with their little ones in tow, I realize all the more just how much I miss you.

One thing that I thought I'd never miss are all those years spent helping you get through school. The endless mornings of getting you up earlier than you thought any sane person should be getting up. And the endless nights of getting you to settle down, tucked in, and safely off to sleep. Finally!! All those parent teacher conferences for your report cards. The arguments, the fights, and the tears (yours and mine) over the homework battle. Going to school to learn how to do your math so I COULD help you. Doing battle for you at your school with your 4th grade teacher. We won a few of those battles too, remember? And helping out in the classrooms, all those field trips. I never thought I'd miss those times, but I do. Almost as much as I miss you.

Remember 6th grade football? You found me to be a source of irritation, pushing you just a little harder at every after school practice. And an unending source of embarrassment at every game because I was the mother everyone could hear yelling and cheering clear out on the field. But there were a few times I saw you looking for me, knowing right where I'd be because I followed every play up and down the field. I had more pride in me than your whole school did when your team beat the rival school for the first time in seven years. So please forgive your mother in her overzealous pride. And believe me when I tell you that I would gladly accept another pound added to my waist line for every one of those times if we could just live them over again. And we'd do it exactly the way we did. I miss those muddy grass stained uniforms and I wish I were washing them still. For it would mean that I wouldn't need to be missing you so much right now.

For all those dozens of cookies I have baked for you and your teenage friends. For all those trips to the grocery store to replenish what you and your locust like herd of friends could wipe out in one afternoon. For all those endless hours spent cooking and baking and cleaning up, little did I realize that my little freckle faced boy would reach 6' 3" and 200 pounds by age 15! No wonder you ate all the time! I know I wish you and your appetite were here today eating me out of house and home. I miss baking all of those cookies for you. And for all of your friends. Almost as much as I miss you.

And even with all those times that I miss so much, there will be more that I will miss out on. For, regretfully the trend that society claims all too often, called divorce, has struck down our family as well. And you in your advancing teenage years and wisdom chose to stay with your father. With heavy hearts and without you, your younger brother and I moved away.

So all the *firsts* that you have yet to experience I will miss out on, and I will miss you even more. The first time you felt your teenage heart beat with 'love' I missed. As I did the first time it was broken. And I missed all of the parent teacher conferences I should have had to share with you. When you passed your driver's permit test, I missed the shine of excitement that was no doubt in your eyes. As I will miss out on it when you get your driver's license.

You are growing up so fast that I know there are events on your life that I don't even know I am missing out on. Thank you Alexander Graham Bell for making it possible for my son and I to be able to *reach out* across the vast miles that lie between us and share what we can, in the only way that we can.

I missed your first big date and your first big dance. Even though I know I will miss you the day you will, hopefully, leave home for college, never doubt my pride in you. For that will always be there, God willing, with the right timing and finances, I won't miss you on your graduation from high school.

And for the greatest *single* event in your life, that all parents should be allowed to share with their child, I promise you, that if I am invited I will NOT miss you on your wedding day.

For as much as I miss you in all the times we've shared, I miss you the most during all those times we can't share.

Today I looked through your baby pictures. Do you know that your size 15 1/2 men's feet are longer than your entire body was when you were first born those all-to-short years ago? You were taller than both of your grandmothers by age twelve, taller than me by age fourteen and taller than your father by age fifteen. It's been so long since I saw you last that I can only wonder who you are taller than today. But I know one thing. The next time I see you, I won't promise not to cry wherein you get on that plane to return home. And it won't be you who squeezes in one extra long, extra tight hug before you board. And it won't be me who's being the adult when you turn to leave. It will have to be you. Because I'll be missing you before you even go.

Just as I let you be old enough to walk to the bus stop alone, I will let you be old enough to wipe away my tears as we say our final good byes. And as your plane lifts you up into the sky and out of my reach, I will tearfully and regretfully whisper "I miss you already".

So when you have children and you go to tuck your babies in at night, don't be too eager to look into their futures and wonder who they'll be when they grow up. It will happen on it's own all too fast.

I missed you today, even more than I missed you yesterday, or the day before that, or even the day before that. But less than I will miss you tomorrow.

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