My youngest son lives in a different country, and so we communicate through an app called WhatsApp. It is an instant messaging app. Because it goes through the internet and not through your phone service, it is free to use. A blessing to communicate with someone who lives in another country.
Lately, our conversations have been short. Mostly, hi how are you or just to say I love you and goodnight because his life has been pretty busy.
To give you some background; his father, my ex-husband, was abusive to all of us. I was unable to protect myself or them. I carry a heavy weight for this.
The following is a copy of a WhatsApp conversation I had the other night with him. Tears were rolling down my face as I wrote these words to him, I could barely see my keyboard. And fortunately he could not see or hear it. However, you will see that he sensed something part way through.
I am sharing this with you because the message I gave to him in the latter part of our conversation, I want to say to each of you.
If any of you are struggling or beaten down by life and heartache to the point that you do not even recognize yourself anymore, I want you to also take in my words. I hope they can help you find your way back to yourself. I hope these words will inspire each reader in a way that will make a difference in your life.
Today I am that small boat on the ocean trying to put big waves into motion. I am standing here lighting the one match I have to start an explosion. (From the lyrics of “Fight Song” by Rachel Platten)
These words are my gift to each of you!
And so the conversation begins:
Him: Hi mama. How are you?
Me: Good, how are you? I was telling someone about you the other day and it made me realize with a lot of sadness how much you don’t even begin to realize or comprehend how amazing you are! You are brilliant, you think deeply, care deeply, you are beyond amazing! I wish you could even begin to take in all of your accomplishments, the things that you have done on your own against all odds. Most people don’t accomplish them in a life time. You think and care about others, you love to learn, you are creative, and amazing to talk to, to be with. I could not be prouder of you. And you did it in the face of incredible odds.
Him: Well your comments overwhelm me in many senses.
Me: They need to.
Him: But I’m not worthy of some of them. I need to try a lot harder with many things.
Me: Oh yes you are and please don’t ever forget it or let go of it. You hold on to those words until you can believe them.
Him: I’ll tell you one thing: I am grateful every day to have a mother like you.
Me: I wish so much we could have had a better life.
Him: Never think that way. We can’t be slaves to fantasies of other lives. What we are is what we have been. Destroy or rewrite that and you destroy who we are.
Me: That is true, but you deserved so much more. I want to tell you something and I want you to hold onto this. No one can ever completely destroy you unless they are able to take your goodness and kindness away from you.
Him: Thats a good thing to be reminded of.
Me: So you hold on to all the good parts of yourself with everything you have no matter what. Cling to them, stand with them. That is the best thing we can do in life.
Me: It is what will breathe life into you. And make you proud of yourself. And nothing, nothing can top that.
Him: Ive been thinking about that a lot. And trying to renew my efforts in that.
Me: I came to this realization for myself recently. The world is in front of us, but none of it, none of it will mean anything without our heart our soul, our love and kindness. So take my words in and don’t let life beat it out of you. Don’t be afraid to keep loving through disappointments in life. It is what ultimately brings us back to ourselves.
Him: Your sentiments couldn’t be more timely.
Me: Feel life, take it in.
Him: I do feel like I have lost touch with myself lately, disjointed, dissonant.
Me: Get it back, fight for it.
Him: But have been striving to retake my sense of self and values.
Me: Love, love, love, and then love somemore. And be kind to yourself.
Me: And give your wife and the girls my love.
Him: I will. How are you guys? Everything ok?
Me: Good, yes we are doing well. I am just being your mother. I cannot give you these things, but I hope that I can inspire them in you.
Him: The best variety, and you do.
Me: They are already in you. I am just encouraging you to hold on to them with everything you have.
Him: Thank you mom. It is a pure gift. And I value it dearly.
Me: If we lose our goodness, it really is what can make us lose everything that is good in life. But most importantly lose ourselves. I love you dearly!
Him: I love you too Mom
Him: 😘😘😘 Goodnight Mom
Now in order to honor the profound statement he made, “Never think that way. We can’t be slaves to fantasies of other lives. What we are is what we have been. Destroy or rewrite that and you destroy who we are,” I share the following song with you.
I sent this song to him. I thought he would find it interesting in light of his comment. He called me twice the next day to thank me for this conversation and for the song. My heart swells with love for him!
“This Is Who You Are” by Trans-Siberian Orchestra: (lyrics follow)
time brings revelation
for someone to believe
That the ghosts we’ve hidden
or left to die
have now arisen and will arrive
to say what has happened
say what has happened
say what has happened
And who would have thought
that you’d be the one
that I would have found here waiting
Lost in this night
until you arrived
and always too blind to see
And who would have thought
that after this time
that I’d be the one you’re saving
the ghosts that survive
now say what was meant to be
I never wanted to give my life away
who ever thought it would matter any way
Wandering inside this night
finding pieces of a life
never sure I’d ever know what it means
It’s the strangers in your life
that you’d never thought you’d meet
it’s the hand that picked you up
when you’re laying in the street
It’s the hand that cut you down
it’s the dream that someone shared
when you thought that all was lost
it’s the friend that wasn’t there
You can run from all the memory
but never get that far
for in the end they’ll find you
for this is who you are
Change one note
change one line
nothing’s going to be the same
change one loss
change one cut
everything is re-arranged
cruel or kind
lost inside our memory
if you look
there in time
You’ll find it in
find it in
find it in
you’ll find it in me