Letters From A Son: Dear Mom

I admit it. . .
Time slips away from me. There are days when I run into myself as I come through the door. I burn the candle at both ends because life is a busy place to be. The toughest part about this are the moments I miss because life is always on the go.

I admit to the phone calls while driving in the car. I do this because these are the best times to talk without interruption or distraction.
The only problem is the moments are limited. The list of calls and people I need to catch up with is long, which means that time slips away. This means the distance between phone calls can grow longer than they should be.

This is not intentional or personal by any means. This is just life in a busy world. I suppose this is something we all go through until one day, life changes.
We live and we grow, which is unavoidable. We look back at the paths we took to get where we are now. And sometimes we shake our head. Sometimes we laugh a little. And sometimes, we ask ourselves, “What the hell was I thinking?”

Today is May 5th
This is not an ordinary day. Mornings like this would usually mean a phone call. Today would be a day that meant a phone call to a florist because white roses always seemed nice.
Years back, this meant a combination gift of Mother’s Day and a Birthday present with a call to the airlines for a round trip ticket from Florida to New York.

I tell you age is a funny trick. More and more, I see age as something that doesn’t play fairly. I swear it was only a blink of an eye and suddenly, everyone grew older.
We all grew up. People moved on with their life. Everyone found their own paths to go down and places to live.
The one lesson I learned is that life is inevitable and eventual. There is no escaping this fact.
I learned the benefit of life is that time always continues. Time always moves, which can be good because time allows us to heal from old wounds.
However, time continues to move which can almost be without mercy because as much as we wish we could, nothing can stay forever. The only thing that lasts are the imprints we leave behind.

Our life is relative to the span of one full day. We are born in the morning. We grow through the early hours and reach the moment of noon. This is when the sun is at the highest point in the sky.
We age through the afternoon years of our life and as the sun begins to descend, if we are lucky, we get to enjoy the twilight and at night, lastly, we sleep our eternal sleep.
The length of time we live is not certain. All we have is this one life, which is only a glimpse in eternity. All we have is now to leave behind our everlasting mark because this is what life is about.
We leave behind the imprints of our journey and the extensions of our love with family and friends.

There are times in life that seem uncertain and intense. There are days that we are not at our best and days when the frustration hits an all-time high. Priorities change with changes of responsibilities. Our intentions evolve until a time comes when eventually, we approach the twilight of our life. Then we look back and wish to ourselves, “If only I had slowed down a few times.”

The value of time is absolutely priceless. This minute is irretrievable. So are the next minutes and the ones afterwards. This is so because there is nothing more irreplaceable than time.
Once gone, all we have is the imprints of memory. Time is finite but memory is infinite. Therefore we are infinite; therefore, we can never die because a piece of us is always remaining.

Today is your birthday, Mom.
I’d like to send flowers but I’m not sure if the postman can reach you where you are. I’d love to send a ticket for you to visit but last I checked, there were no flights out of LaGuardia, JFK, or Newark.
I’d like to call and sing happy birthday but the phone lines can’t reach you either. So instead, I am sending this birthday thought into the universe to reach you, wherever you may be.

I wish you were around to make that call too.
It’s hard to know that I can’t pick up the phone whenever I want. But this clarifies the need to prioritize my time so that times does not slip away anymore.

There are so many people I wish you could meet. It would have been nice to introduce you to some people I’ve been involved with over the last few years. They would have loved you. You would have loved them too.
You could have told them about the time I did a book review at the library. Remember?
You kept calling out to me from the back of the room and telling me what to say next. In fairness, I was only half-embarrassed because I knew you were proud. Also in fairness, it was pretty funny to be up in front of a roomful of people as a grown man to discuss my writing. And there you were, my Mom in the back of the room, yelling from the rear seats and telling me what stories to share.

I’ve done several presentations since then. The rooms have grown much larger and the topics I cover are a bit more intense.
I think there are some people that would like to know what it was like to be a Mom to me. And I try to tell people but only you could tell that story best.

Just know that your baby boy is doing well.  I have a lot of Moms now that have stepped up to offer support.  I have friends now. They are real friends too. I have learned a lot over the last few years but one thing reveals more clearly than anything else. Time is absolutely finite, which means above all things, we have to make every moment count. I’m pretty sure this is what you’ve been trying to teach me all along.

Happy Birthday, Ma.

I love you

I miss you

Your son,


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