Sitting across from me right now is my favorite person in the whole wide world. We have been calling him Luke since birth.
The greatest gift anyone can ever receive–a child. I know having a child is a lot of work for both parents, the mother in particular for obvious reasons. The benefits of having a child in one’s life far outweigh the challenges. In fact, I would even say the challenges are what make it so great to be a parent.
If it wasn’t for Luke in my life I would not be the person I have become thus far. I am a better person in this world because of him. Learning to love another unconditionally is not easy with a person like me, who for some reason grew up with love under certain conditions, on top of being a narcissist that rivals some of the world’s top narcissists. The only difference, thanks to Luke and living in Japan I have transcended this for the most part.
With a child we get a chance to look at our foibles, face up to them and with a little work and paying attention transcend. With my son not only have I done that time and time again, I continue to, and along the way have developed a very strong bond based on respect and love with him.
Living in a place like Japan, which can be isolating to foreigners, having Luke has enriched my life in ways I would never have expected. Through his hobbies I have been able to become a part of the community.
Volunteer coaching his soccer team for a few years I got to know his teammates and parents. Attending practices, games and parties has allowed me access to the community. If there was no Luke I don’t know if it would be possible. There are many times I’ll be out walking around and run across his teammates or parents and talk with more than just a passing greeting. While it may seem simple, what a joy it is when that happens in a country that is somewhat closed off to foreigners.
He’s a good kid. Biased? Yes. True? Also yes. With character strongly intact, this little guy is a lot like me in many ways. Natural athletic abilities, twisted sense of humor and wanting to be the center of attention on his terms. Yet not wanting to be when called upon directly.
He’s not a stellar student, but then again neither were his mother and father. I came into learning how to learn late in life. While an academic education is important, street smarts is just as important. I want to give him as many life experiences as possible. The one thing I have been pushing early and something I came to late is creativity. His Mom is creative as his Dad now. It’s in his blood and finding it as we speak with drawing and comedy.
Where life takes him when he becomes an adult (He’s 10 now) I am looking forward to. While I cannot protect him from everything life will throw his way, I can be there to support him when he falls. And he will. We all do at some point in our lives.
Well our time at the coffee shop is coming to an end as is this blog post.
His name again, Luke as in …