To Zach, English
As I write this, you are 3,5 years of age. Barely out of the gate in the race of life, and already you’ve had a profound impact on so many people around you. You’re sitting right next to me eating a few crackers; after refusing to eat lunch you’re quite hungry and irritated – dinner is still about an hour away.
The reason I’m writing this now isn’t so much because of who you are, but rather who I am.
Don’t be alarmed – but I’m your father.
As a father, I try to do my best even if I know I fail you at times. I know I don’t play with you as much as you deserve, and I also know my mood is too rough at times – way more often than you deserve… but I love you, you little bugger. Your energy and enthusiasm are things I truly hope you keep when you grow up and grow old even if both your mother and I can’t keep up with you and sometimes lose our temper… but it’s not you – it’s us. Don’t let our flaws get in the way of your life and your choices. If we ever try to push you into doing an activity based on our own interests… please remind me of this text, and remind me of my own upbringing.
As far as you can, retain your ability to say no when you feel like something’s wrong, and cultivate your ability to analyze things critically. Don’t just accept things as truth just because a teacher, your boss or your friends tells you that they are true. Of course, I’m the exception to this rule. Not so much your mother, mostly me. Follow your dreams, even if people say that they are silly or stupid… but don’t be stubborn just for the sake of stubbornness itself.
Keep being the caring and gentle boy that you are, and stay the loving little bugger that you’ve grown into despite our attempts to make you into a harsh and evil killing machine.
In short – stay true to who you are, be all that you can be, and as long as you are happy with it I don’t care if you win the nobel prize in physics or if you’re serving happy meals at Mcdonalds.
Just keep being you.