Today is your 2nd day of school. Your 2nd full day as a 4th grader, I only say this to give you a point of reference when you read this. Most likely I am long gone, and you have matured a quite a bit, this is just my way of staying a part of your life.
Today I am going to talk a bit about our relationship, and one of the key components of our relationship. That being trust. Below is a picture of you and me taking a walk. It was at a football game. a Hudson High Homecoming. The red tee-shirt you have is a Hudson High Cougar tee-shirt I believe. Your mom at the time was the coach of the cheer leaders, and your dad was actively involved in the Home Coming program that would take place at half time. Your grandmother and I had been invited to come to the game and sit with you as your mom and did their thing.
Your grandmother took this picture as we began our walk.
At the time this photo was taken you were getting bored, and I invited you for a walk, it was before my disease had taken full force, and I wasn’t on oxygen at the time. But that is immaterial, we got up from our seats, and began our walk. I reached down, you reached up, and we held hands, you showed your trust in me, you knew I had your best interest in my heart, and you knew I wouldn’t let anything bad happen. Of course you didn’t say any of this, you were a little over 3 years old at the time, and your communications skills weren’t nearly as refined as they are today. But this simple act of holding my hand exhibited so much trust. We walked in the middle of the track, I was about a ¼ step in front, just enough to offer a buffer of protection, as we sundered around the track. To my mind this was the 1st time you truly showed you trusted me. You let me lead you, and we kinda chatted, I don’t have any recall of what we said, but I am sure you pointed out things that interested you, and I am sure I pointed out things that interested me. That day we ended up walking one half way around the track. They were setting up for the half time show so we decided to turn around the way we came, we stopped in the bouncy room, and then took our seats for the game.
This moment of trust, was the start. In the coming weeks, months and years, we would countless times of exhibiting trust towards each other. Sometimes it manifested itself when we would play “sit on me Grandpa.” Where you knew I would indeed sit on you, but that I wouldn’t put my entire weight on you. You would giggle like mad, screaming joyfully “sit on me” “sit on me” “sit on me” as I squished you. But never were you totally squished. Else you would be a pancake now. In other times it manifested itself in the pool, as we played countless games, and I took part it either dunking you or throwing you. It also showed itself when you were learning to jump into the pool.
As children we are given the greatest gift in the world we trust everyone unconditionally. We never think anyone or anything will harm us, our trust is so complete. But as we age, even as children, our trust begins to faultier, we don’t trust that dog down the street as much, we don’t believe that kid is going to be kind, that adult doesn’t quite seem right.
Today you’re 9 years old, you are beginning to develop your own sense of trust, and you’re looking at things with your own eyes, and making your own decisions. Your mind is setting up the guidelines by which you will soon be making the rules by which you will live the rest of your life. This is an important time for you. You are blessed with 2 wonderful parents that are doing everything in their power to ensure you have a good foundation by which you establish those rules. You have good grandparents that all are trying to help influence you, you have a wide range of cousins helping, and you have your church and the influence it provide. You have all the tools before you.
As you have trusted me in our childish games, and our quiet times of softly spoken conversations in my office. I am trusting you to continue to make the good decisions, I am trusting you to grow and be the good person you’re heading towards being. Cari, again trust me, you will make mistakes, that is a given. Some mistakes will seem unbearable, others will seem very trivial, and still other times you will be greatly confused by your mistakes. But Cari, they are all opportunities to learn and grow.
Cari, the growing process never stops. I am 64 as I write this, and I am learning each day, and yes sweet granddaughter I make mistake, some big some small, and I learn from them just as you will.
Folks as always if you have any thoughts, comments, concerns or questions please feel free to ask. Take care, Bill