Tuesday, August 21, 2007

That's No Boy...That Man Is My Son!

When I was 25 years old I had no idea that the single most important thing that would ever happen to me in my lifetime had already happened. My son Ryan was born in November 1989, three months before my own 25th birthday. Now of course I knew that this was a big event, but could I possibly have imagined how big? No way! Obviously with a new baby comes change. I'm not talking about the changes that come with having a baby, I'm talking about the way a woman, particularly a self-reliant, independent thinking, got it all together, motivated woman such as I believed myself to be can change. I've heard it said many times that God does not make mistakes. That notwithstanding, I was positive that God (not I) had made a tragic mistake on the day I discovered I was pregnant. Fortunately for us all and me especially, life creates many opportunities for us to learn that it is a really good thing that we are not God. Thankfully, contrary to our own wishes sometimes, we don't rule the world; because I shudder when I think of all I would have been giving up if I had had it in my power to change the result of that pregnancy test.

As the years went by and Ryan grew up, I found that there were many things I didn't know about myself let alone the world. Being Ryan's Mom taught me to stop and smell the roses, a skill I've tried to pass on to him. Before Ryan, though I believed myself to be a cool cookie, I stressed over just about everything. After Ryan, I learned that there are so many more important things than whatever it was that had me "upset" at one point or another. I was able to go with the flow so much better. I'm sure beyond a shadow of a doubt that having this incredible person in my life changed everything for the better. No matter how hard I think about it, I can find no down side to being his Mom. This baffled me for a long time as I believe every cloud has a silver lining so the reverse has to be true as well. I have reconciled this discrepancy by accepting that the fact that the silver lining that is Ryan has no accompanying cloud is the exception that is necessary to prove the rule.

Today was the first day of Ryan's senior year in high school. Damn! where does the time go? My sweet little baby who used to be unable to dunk on his Little Tykes basketball goal now is 6'2" tall and weighs 280 pounds. He is a Varsity football player playing both Offensive guard and Nose Tackle. He is researching colleges and moving at the speed of light towards the day when he will make that first real step towards a life that is all but totally independent of mine. A part of me feels a sense of loss at the impending severing of the "unbilical cord" that though cut at his birth has continued to connect us as he has grown up. A bigger part of me however feels a greater sense of pride than I ever thought was possible. I feel pride that he has turned out to be an even better person than I anticipated. I feel pride because of the role I had in helping him become the person he is. Mostly, I feel pride because even though he was raised almost single-handedly by a woman whose father died when she was only nine years old, my son is no longer a boy, he is a MAN; and a damned good MAN too if I do say so myself!!


Anonymous said...

Awww, your baby is a man. And you've done a good job of raising him.

Luke Cage said...

Sorry miss Sharon. I commented in the wrong post. I’m speechless and so captivated by your words. I’ve been moved beyond responses this week. First Jaine Blaize talks about her daughter and the preparation she’s making for her daughter in the future and now these words about your son.

Incredible prose from a very inspiring and uplifting post about love, motherhood and the day the bird leaves his nest. Nicely done miss Sharon!

DJ Diva said...

my goodness. That pic of him in the football uniform. I was like what man is that?

He is all grown up. Congrats on a job well done. Cause that what it is....the job of raising an emotionally well balanced, respectful individual who will make his/her own impact on other lives.

I'm happy for you and I know it wasn't easy. But some of it was right?

Safa said...

WOW, I 2nd all the previous commentors. Being a mom to boys, I am trying to balance instilling the nurturing/sensitive side with the strong, independent side. It's a careful balance but it seems you've done a great job of this.