“TO MY CHILD: KNOWING THE FUTURE”
From the moment you were born you wanted to understand everything you saw. The aqua green walls were a mystery, just as the flickering pictures on the TV; what you were interested in. You were lost in infant thought as you watched the ceiling fan, played with the toys of your jumper or stomped on the shipping box platform to hold you for the jumper. I watched your little soft feet alternately stomp on the cardboard and the smiles you gave when you passed gas or burped. You were curious of the patterns on the rarely made bed, and your confusion faded into joy when your mom removed her shower scarf to unveil her fluffy afro.
As you learned to crawl, you sprinted in circles on the bed with moment of pause to feel the contours of the mattress, or look at us and smile with a joy that made me remember that simple things are the best things, and complicated things are achievements. Those complicated things included you sniffing out my pillow and humping with that same level of joy, walking along the double-wide window, and even being helped up when you cart wheeled between the foot of the bed and the 3-shelf book case for everything to care for you. The worry on your face and rest between the two, and the smile and hug you gave me when I lifted you to my shoulder are memories I hope never fade.
Teaching you to walk on the unstable bed made you a perfectly balanced toddler once you were able to walk the floor. Living in a 10×10 and venturing out to the rest of the home when it felt safe was nerve racking but worth it as I learned how far I would go to ensure your survival from then until we part ways. Everything you saw and wondered about, became clear and then explained as you grew and we moved before you turned two. The public-housing apartment added new wonder for you as to the sounds on the other side of the wall, the angry woman beating on it, hollering at people, and her husband beating on the door after hours. The curiosity you developed and mimicking of me putting my ear to the wall to listen showed me how much of a role-model I am to you. Seeing you sit down like your mom, bob your head like her, and smile when you taste something you loved most ignited my wonders about you.
To find a template of who you are, we found you born in the year of the ox, close to a tiger. Your primal is the ant, and your Greek sign is Capricorn. A template of your personality is not a perfect guide on your all-around character. As your mother said, “When we are born, we are helpless, dependent on our parents for nourishment, protection, everything required for survival.” This means that the day you begin your road to being independent, you will need us more then, than the first years of your life. Like all wanderers, you will be curious about the future and if it is at all possible to know it. The answer is, “Yes.”
How can we tell you the future? The answer is simple. We have lived. Your path will be the same as every other person you will ever meet: Find what makes you happy and stable during your time alive. We have lived two separate lives, with separate experiences. We have met a range of people and watched a further range of people. We have experienced different events, as we grew before our meeting. We have learned the human animal and what it can do. Despite everything new during our development and yours, technology does not change the human being; just where it is, and how safe it is to do what it wants and get away with it. You taught us that. You have a great level of persistence to do whatever it is that you want to do. While we try to curtail that with better options, misdirection, warnings, and discipline, you improve every day in the skill of being cunning, and thus, we must improve with you. We’ve shed more tears in joy of you than anything else in our lives combined. Just know, that everything you can do, and will do, we have done, seen it done, or know enough to make an educated guess on how it may turn out. You talk to us, and we will inform you, but not control you. You have to do that on your own. Let us guide you with our wisdom, our experience, and in return, we ask that you teach us with everything of your own. We know that you want what you want – without much care of others, however, for now, we will do our best to guide you into compassion, empathy, the golden rule, and full respect of yourself and your surroundings. Let us give you the best of our lives as you grow, and you give us the best of yours. We love our little girl. We love you.