As a member of the monthly blog group Letters to our Sons, I have written a letter to Evan. This group of mother-photographers takes time out of their “business” life to focus their cameras and thoughts on their son(s). We link to each other’s letters, so after you read mine, please follow the link to the next one.
May 25th, 2013
Yesterday was a big day for me, and although you don’t realize it, it was a bigger day for you and your sisters. The day started out as usual… I got all three of you up, dressed, and fed. Then we took Sydney to school. When we came home, dad was waking up from working late the night before. We all had a little time together in the backyard before dad had to run off and do some important errands. Before the morning could get away from me, I decided to take 20 minutes to myself to get some exercise. So you and Maleah watched The Letter Factory while I exercised in the garage. At the end of my run, I stumbled onto a friend’s link about yelling. Yes, yelling. We mothers sometimes yell at our kids. I know I do. I sat down on the treadmill and quickly read the article. It actually was a letter that another mother wrote to confess her history of being led by anger, frustration, and disappointment to yell at her kids. By the middle of her letter, I was in tears, convicted of my past and present, ashamed, and sorrowful. Something hit me as I sat there, covered in sweat and tears. I felt so weak and defeated, but I was not powerless. I instantly realized that my mothering had to change
I wasn’t alone. I immediately shared this article on Facebook, as my friend had done. So many of my friends read it, and felt moved by it. The communication between my friends and I took off like a wildfire. I knew something was happening inside of me. When daddy came home, I gathered all of you at the dining table and said I had an important announcement. Everyone was listening and waiting to hear what I had to say, except you. You just wanted to play, but I needed you to be there, on my lap, as I spoke my next words. I needed your presence to help hold me accountable to the promise I was about to make. I don’t know if you knew all that, but you sat their patiently, the weight of your body helping me hold back some of my tears. Not all of them, but some of them.
I confessed to you, your sisters, and your dad, that I have made mistakes by being so quick to yell at you all. I apologized. I promised to control my temper and my voice. Your sisters where excited and happy to hear my news. Their faces spoke more to me than I could have imagined. It made my confession sting inside a little bit more, but there was and is no turning back. I am tired of yelling. I don’t want you kids to fear my anger. I want to graciously accept my childrens’ “childish indiscretions,” as your father eloquently refers to them. I want to be an calm, responsive mother, who still teaches and corrects, out of love.
It has been one day since I made this promise to you and the rest of our family. And what a difference a day has made! As you grow older, I hope you won’t remember me as a mother who yelled too much. I hope that I have caught myself soon enough so that you will remember me as a strong mother, strong in love, forgiveness, and her promises.
I love you more than before,
P.S. These pictures of you were taken last weekend, when you and I had a “date” at Fashion Island in Newport Beach. You just loved the water fountains and the koi fish pond. I will never forget our date, and successfully keeping you and my camera out of the pond’s water.
Please continue reading the next Letters To Our Sons, written by Beth Ann Fricker | BAF Photography.