Several weeks ago, just a few days before Christmas, my son and I shared one of the most bittersweet moments of my life. Every night I have the privilege of putting him to bed. We have established a routine that is fun and helps him relax for the night. This night was no different than any other.
We were going through our nighttime routine, which includes me asking him the” biggest and fastest question in the entire universe” about his day. It is a silly thing, but it is one of the highlights of my day. As I finished this question, he caught me off guard with what he proclaimed.
“I want to keep growing and growing to be the same as daddy.”
How wonderful it was for me to hear him say this.
I was humbled and proud that he wants to be like me. Growing up, I always wanted to be like my dad, but I don’t remember ever telling him.
In that moment, the impact of his words was profound!
I started to wonder if I’ve been the best example for him. I recommitted in my mind to be the best I can be for his sake! It is my responsibility as his father to point him to Jesus and teach him how to be a man! I do not take this responsibility lightly.
“Daddy does not wear a hearing aid.”
“Daddy does not wear a cochlear implant.”
“Daddy does not wear an eye (prosthetic).”
“I want to make a match with daddy.”
Talk about a teary-eyed moment!
He knows he is different from me. He believes that he and I will be the same when he is an adult.
What do I say? What can I say to will help him understand that even though we are different I could not love him more than I already do?
If God would allow me to, I would trade places with him in an instant. I would take his hearing aid, cochlear implant, and prosthetic eye without hesitation.
Unfortunately, life doesn’t work this way. And, these are things he will not outgrow.
I want him to know everything he sees as different, I see as what makes him amazing! I want him to know that different does not have a negative connotation. I want him to be secure and confident because of his abilities & talents.
As a Christian, I believe that God can heal my son of his disabilities IF it is God’s will for his life. But, if God chooses not to heal him, I will still praise God and teach him to do the same!
Since this first came up, he has mentioned these things again several times. When he does, I just tell him that I want a hearing aid, cochlear implant, and prosthetic eye so I can make a match with him.
I love that my son is unique! I want the world to see him as I do!
Creative, smart, funny, musical, and compassionate.
I pray that I do right by him. I pray that I am a good enough father and man that he wants to be like me as he grows up.
I don’t believe there is any greater feeling for a father than to have his son want to be like him!
I love you, my son and am honored to be your father!