Below is what I wrote to my mom for her 41st birthday, January 31st, 2017.
Happy 41st Birthday! Birthdays are really unique in that it’s all about one person, and it’s a time where someone can verbally express how deeply they care. Where I may not always be around, be it in my room, work, school, or working on some project, I am always hoping to be home at the earliest possible second. And you’re responsible for that.
Being 18, I’m realizing that each day lived is one spent with others. Because once a day is gone, it’s gone from all of us. Realizing this, we should chose how we interact carefully and thoughtfully. Sure, days may bring evenings of fighting, but they also bring evenings of love. Days may bring death and tragity, but days may also bring life and hope. Days may bring goodbyes, but they may also bring hellos.
Now being 41, you may already know this. You may try to protect me and my brothers from all the hurt days bring, but you must also know that all the good days bring don’t feel as good if not for the pain.
I didn’t learn this overnight. In fact, I learned it over all 18 years. You’ve done so well raising me, teaching me what life is, and the importance of living days to the fullest. And I only want to remind you of these facts, because I feel your slight fear of aging, through observations of gray hair and notices of wrinkles and aches. And you shouldn’t be afraid, mama. Because you have so many days ahead of you. You get to live them with me, my brothers, your husband, our whole family, and especially yourself. We will spend each other’s days together. You’re never alone.
I love you mama, I love you so much, thank you for all that you’ve taught and given to me.
Love, your son,