Sunday, March 9, 2014

A Letter to My Oldest Son

Dear Big Guy,

I know you're having a rough time right now.

Over the last week or so, you've confessed to me that you're having a hard time finding 'your place' among your classmates. The boys and girls in school have started to act differently than in years past; they're at the beginning stages of creating the social hierarchy that will last throughout the rest of your school years.

In Kindergarten, and first grade, everyone was friends with everyone.  As they grew older, kids started to gravitate toward other kids with similar interests, on the same sports teams, etc., and that's perfectly normal, but everyone was still friendly with all their classmates. 

Now, as you are finding out, everything has changed.

Instead of kids just being kids, it's starting to be important to become 'cool.'

And for you, my darling son, that isn't important. You don't care about cool. You care about doing what makes you happy. About following your own path. About being yourself. And what you don't realize is that although the other kids don't find that 'cool' now, that is EXACTLY what is going to make you cool for the rest of your life.

Yes, your classmates seem to be a little ahead of you socially, but in reality? They are far, FAR behind you.  In their hurry to grow up, they may leave stuff behind they like because it's not cool. They may forgo the simple pleasure of playing pirates or tag or just running for no reason, even though they may not necessarily want to. The great thing about you?? If you like it, you're gonna do it and no one is going to tell you not to.

How incredibly brave is that?

The things that make you, YOU (your incredibly kind heart, your empathy, your desire to do what's right, your ability to be your own person - and so much more!) are what's going to be cool!
It might be hard to imagine right now, but when you guys look back, no one is going to remember or be proud of acting nonchalant in the 4th grade. But, my dear son, YOU will look back and say, I was always an individual! I always treated people fairly and with kindness! And I was always, always true to myself.

You will look back and you will be proud. Just as proud of yourself as we are, and always will be.

Love you,