What I Can’t Deny
I was asked this question as a way to provoke insightful writing in a personal writing class and it was not until I opened my notebook that I realized just how difficult this question was. After hours and hours of staring at a blank paper, my little boy and some chocolate inspired me.
Here goes…. what I can’t deny is that the single word “mama” can make my heart beat faster, for a million different reasons, more than any other word I know. That single word, in all its different meanings, defines all that I am, all that I try to be, and all that I will become. My every success, failure, happiness, fear, compassion, love, and sorrow means so much more the day I became mama. Just the other day, I watched my precious little boy play in his very first football practice as starting quarterback. After practice, of other the other mama’s offered the boys a chocolate ice cream sandwich each. My boy ate his ice cream so quickly it’s a wonder he tasted it at all!
As soon as he’d finished he looked at me, with chocolate all over his excited face, and said to me “Mama, I didn’t stop hustling once during practice!” All I could do was focus on the sweet chocolate covered smile of my little football guy and my heart began to melt. I thought to myself, I must be doing something right. In my next breath, however, panic set in, how do I keep doing it right? I want my son to be a man of his choosing not mine. I want to pave the way for him since this precious young age so that when he is faced with choices in life, there will be plenty of love, trust, humility, and failures that his hustling and me being his mama will be enough to secure his future. When he grows up and says to me “Mama, I didn’t stop hustling once” either as a football player, scholar, husband, father, or whatever path he chooses I want it to be because that single word mama meant everything to me and it taught him to believe in himself as well as the possibilities and wonders of the world so that the hustling happens for his own success and happiness’s and not my own.
I can’t deny that my single most important prayer is that I can be a good mama, as a good mama translates to so many different things, and I can’t deny that it scares me. I can’t deny that the most important lesson that word mama means to me is to be able to teach my child to be able to fulfill his dreams and passions by always hustling so that win, lose, fail, or succeed even mama won’t have the right to say he is wrong. That is of course when he is old enough to clean the chocolate from his face.