Friday, August 16, 2013

Peas Glorious Peas

To my son Tommy,

Every food we get you to try is a struggle.  That is why every food you eventually eat is such a triumph to be celebrated.  That new food we celebrate is the basic green pea.  You ate ten of these little green balls last night, and that is something that even your mother and grandmother Ro don't particularly like doing.  Your mother, being the great mom she is, suffered through her helping to set a good example for you.  There you sat, with ten green peas set out in a row in front of you, and one by one, you chewed them up and swallowed and celebrated.  I think you even did two at a time when you got a little over half way through.  You started being a bit picky with the size and shape of the pea.  Evidently you prefer none broken and less wrinkly peas, but we can deal with that OCD later.  It is kind of like you not liking the too crunchy french fries.  I guess we will just load you up with hundreds of peas to choose from.

Enjoy the celebrations of your youth.  I laugh when I think about and scrutinize what we celebrate and praise you for accomplishing.  Soon, the achievements of your youth will be come commonplace and expected.  What, yesterday, was a great accomplishment, tomorrow will be required and expected.  I mean I ate a full serving of peas and no one told me "Great job" (I kid, I kid).  It is just the way of the world that levels of expectation constantly rise.

It is the triumph of the struggle, the first summit of the mount, that brings excitement and elation for everyone.  The practice, the return to the top of the mountain, the doing it again and again, that is where you must find your own personal joy and personal growth.  Every day of life is a struggle.  Every day of life is a struggle to live and love and better ourselves.  Every day of life you must strive to help the world, your family, your fellow man, and yourself to become better.  Every day we have the opportunity to triumph over this struggle we call life and to celebrate the grace given to us to do so.  We don't need the constant excitement and congratulations that the initial moment brought.  There isn't always going to be someone there to say "Great job taking a vitamin every day, I am so proud of you!" but that shouldn't limit you from keeping on.  Occasionally though, on the particularly grueling days where I accomplish so little and just survive with the basics, I would love to feel a hand on my shoulder and a comforting voice saying "You might not think so, but you done good today.  Good job!"  I can almost hear an angel whispering those exact words in my ear every night after we say our prayers and I tuck you in for the night and you say "I love you Daddy".

Sincerely with love from your dad,

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