Mistakes. I make a lot of them. Too many as your only present parent.
I fight the urge to holler. Forgive me for my quick sharp bellowing interruptions- attempting to shock you into stopping what you are doing. It is how I was parented. I fight it everyday. And every day I get better. But you deserve better- and I'm getting there, pumpkin.
You are very good at showing me those mistakes. You play them out- and as I wonder where you learned to act like that- I'm immediately reminded- as if looking in a mirror.
And then... you amaze me. I see other behaviors reflected.. but in you- the reflection feels so much more real, more sensitive, more touching .. more.
Tonight- as we lay down to sleep, we are visiting Uncles in DC. You snuggle into me close as you can with your head on my shoulder. Your hand touches my face. "Mommy." you say in that soft voice I remember of Ethiopians. Your fingers lead your eyes, studying my face. Playing with my eyelids and eye brows. "Mommy. Eyes. Special."
Fingers tracing my cheeks, every wrinkle, crease and scar. "Mommy. Beautiful."
Tucking your head closer, between my cheek and the pillow, you wrap your tiny arm up over my head, wrapping my hair in your fingers. You take a deep breath and within moments you are fast asleep.
Before this moment, I thought I knew I was fit to be a parent. I thought I knew what to do. I thought I'd learned it all. I thought I'd grown enough. You have changed me. You have touched the foundation of who I am and strengthened us as a family like nothing I could have ever attempted or known was possible. You- as a child- make me a better parent and a better person. You are a GREAT son. I love you baby.