I’ve mentioned Dooce a time or two here and I’ve mentioned Brandon Rogers before as well. Both do rather longish letters to their children. Heather at Dooce on a monthly basis and Brandon, appearantly on birthdays. Today happens to be the big number 8 for his son.
As I find myself gravitating to daddy-hood rather quickly now, I found Brandon’s letter to his 8 year old son rather touching. Take a read, you won’t be dissapointed. Brandon’s writing style takes a little to get used to, but once you do, he’s a very talented writer.
And at some point you will even find yourself laughing at some cruelty, at the expense of another’s dignity and pride, out of weakness, because we’re not so good as to walk faultless among our friends, but in the privacy of your room, I know you well enough to know you will feel terrible about it afterwards. I myself am not so nearsighted as to raise a perfect child in such an imperfect world. I would never do that to you, Tristan. Don’t prove me wrong by turning out too terribly good.
In a few days, we will have forgotten that we enjoyed our yearly celebration of your entry into our lives with a trip to a small creek where we set up our tent and walked among the river rocks in search of pyrite and agates. We will forget that we defied nature by watching movies inside the tent. We might even forget that for at least a part of the day, we found ourselves bored, and that the gesture was perhaps more than a little overblown. But I assure you that we will also overlook the imperfections as the years pass, and that these days we spent will find exaggeration under the lens. That they will someday stand apart in our memory like those ever-shrinking groves of tamaracks. That I will find this place when the turning of my time returns me to my own 8th birthday. That I will root myself here and stand with you against whatever conflagrations our good intentions could possibly ignite.
It’s truly an amazing piece and deserves a little of your time. Or at least it deserved, and got, a little of mine.