I’m looking for 60 fond memories because you’re turning 60. I’m 27 – nearly half your age and I figured I could come up with at least 2 memories for each year.
When I was 21 and I told you that I hated you – I never thought I’d be looking back “fondly ” at my childhood.
When I was 21, I realized how human you were.
I worked hard to earn your love as a child. I despised you as a teenager , because you were growing up too. And then somehow you became my best friend. And my best friend was supposed to be better than me. And I realized you weren’t. You had messed up, you were not a “role model”, you were not perfect.
I’m 27 now. If one of the kids I worked with told me they hated me, I’d be devastated, let alone my own child. You didn’t really react when I said it. I thought you were rude but I knew you knew. You understood.
Back then I never thought that feeling would pass. I hated hating you. I hope you’ve forgotten about it.
My cappuccino cup is empty. My mind wanders. My pen hovers over my list of “60 fond memories with you.” Funny thing, I stopped at number 21.
21 – I was still a kid in many way.
21 – That’s when you got married. You must have been a kid in many ways.
And as I sit writing down all of our fondest memories , the not so fond ones kick in too.
And I don’t mind. I actually don’t mind. I understand , now. The burden has been lifted. The memories hurt, I always wished you were stronger back then. But you’re so much stronger now.
As you said, no one really gets a handbook on parenting. You know if you said that today, I would be on my phone listing out all the parenting handbooks out there. But as a joke, of course.
I know that if I was a parent I’d do things differently, I would have learnt from your mistakes the same way you learnt from those of your parents. I’d do the best that I could, the way that you did.
I can’t help but wonder how many birthdays you have left.
I can’t help but be glad that we’ve grown up.
I hope I can have you for as many more years as possible.