Tuesday, November 25, 2008

A Letter To My Eight Year-Old Son

Dear Liam,

I cradled you in my arms last night and you reached over and grabbed my hand, holding me tight as you drifted into dreamland. There are no words to describe how much I love you and how much your love means to me- and I'll try not to gush because you're not so fond of P.D.A.s (public displays of affection) anymore- but I've got find a way to let you hear, on this the eve of your eighth birthday, what a gift you are to me and Daddy and our family.

I can remember dancing around the top floor of our townhouse, spring of 2000, as I watched the pink line appear on the third pregnancy test I'd performed that weekend. There was a surreal air about my life- the miracle that we'd created another being- and my heart took flight on the wings of your soul that night....and late that November, you were born. "It's A Boy" they cried, and I had to stop and ponder, even in those magical moments right after birth, how I could parent a son- I'd never had one of those before- hadn't even had a brother or close male cousin....- Liam Michael Cleveland we named you- a strong Irish first name and the names of two of the most influential men in your father's life- his grandfathers Michael and Grover Cleveland, both of whom had sorrowfully missed your entrance into this world, but who most certainly would have adored you completely...

Nearly everyone who meets you catches a glimpse of something different in your being-the brooding intensity with which you meet your life and the maturity you portray at every turn, well beyond your years. As your mama-what I know is that, more than anyone I've ever met, there is something sacred about you, something more heavenly than earthly in your spirit- as if you've touched the soul of God and brought a little of it to share with the rest of us. As your mama, it excites me to think of the brilliance that unfolds in you, with each passing year- the gifts you bring to the world are significant and I believe, manifest the love of your creator. Never doubt, for even a minute, that you are worthy, and not because of the words you can now read or the numerical problems you can solve, but because you are- a boy of wonder and of divine purpose- whose gifts lie underneath the surface of what can be detected as you sit at a desk and struggle over mind-numbing worksheets or scribble in circles on the latest and greatest "How Is Our American Education System Doing" exam.

Thank you, sweet boy, for coming into my world eight years ago. Thank you for teaching me about peace and joy and intellect that is beyond what is quantifiable on standardized tests. Thank you for loving me and forgiving me the flaws of my own humanness in mothering you. Thank you for all that is wonderfully you.

Happy Birthday Liam Sombar - "I Love You More Than You Love Me" "That's Not Possible" "Kim Possible!".

Love,
Mama

Liam, in his new Harry Potter glasses, getting his birthday sausages from Daddy, in bed.




Lily and Liam left school at lunchtime and we all went, as a family, to the pizza place up the street, for lunch.


Liam and his new bike from Gramma.

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Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, United States
Forty-three year-old, mother and staunch advocate of four young children, passionate warrior of truth and self, finding the soul in each day, sharing my struggles and triumphs as I live them. Mostly I do this for me, so my thoughts don't race as much at night as they used to. But I also give this to those of you who need to know, in any or every way, that you are not alone.

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