I wrote this letter to my mother. I debated internally for a long time on how I should deliver it — but because she doesn't take any of the credit for just how amazing she is, this seemed like a good fit.
I would say, and I think you’d agree, that we have what one in the psychology field might refer to as a “dynamic kinship.”
Growing up, we had some of the craziest, most epic battles I think I’ve ever experienced. I really don’t know the inner workings of many other mother-son relationships, but I would be willing to bet that, at least for a few years, ours was one of the more volatile — which, looking back, was nearly always my own absurdities and refusal to admit wrongdoing.
It’s only recently that I’m beginning to understand why you didn’t just give up on me the countless times I know I deserved it.
Mom, you have taught me many, many things through our quarter century long relationship. How to believe in myself when it seems like no one else wants to — which you know has probably been the number one hurdle I’ve had to jump and keep on jumping every single day. How to work hard. How to be a genuine, transparent person. How to treat women that I want to pursue with the respect they deserve. But, honestly, the thing that you’ve shown me more than any other human I have ever encountered is how to love passionately.
The word passion is incredibly overused today, which is unfortunate because it’s a beautiful idea. It doesn’t mean to “really like” or even simply to love. Passion is an uncontrollable feeling so compelling, so enthusiastic that you would suffer, even to death, for something.
For Nate and I, you live that word.
Over 25 years, I have seen you suffer again and again for my wellbeing and comfort. I truly believe there is nothing that you wouldn’t sacrifice for me — even if it meant me hating you for a while. Even if it meant me pushing you away. Even if it meant you having to do without.
You have shown me a type of love that goes light years beyond my comprehension. And that’s the type of love that I pray I’ll be able to show my wife and my children some day.
I can’t wait for that day. And I know you can’t either, because you’re going to be the gunning for greatest grandma ever, too.
Thank you, mom. You’ve given me more than I can ever give back.
I love you.