Perception is a powerful thing. It is a way of regarding, understanding or interpreting something; a mental impression. Simply put… the way we see things.
Never in a million years would I have thought that I’d be graced with an opportunity to raise two amazing young men. I am truly honored to share the role of a parent with both my husband and our oldest son’s biological mother. We are so very proud of the man that he has become! We also have a seven-year-old, our youngest son… well, let’s just say we met in the principal’s office.
Two years ago, I served as a principal at a Christian school. Every day was filled with laughter, tears, and adventures. Eighty percent of those adventures revolved around one student. Clyde. Amongst all of our students, I’d never seen a kindergartener with such heart and character as Clyde. Clyde was the smallest little boy on campus, yet he was the school’s greatest advocator. It was nothing for little Clyde to walk up to an eighth-grader and make demands on behalf of his kindergarten classmates. He would never pick a fight, but he always seemed to know just how to end one. When he didn’t have enough muscle power to win a fight, he used love and forgiveness to win the war. These are the kinds of lessons that I learned from little Clyde on a daily basis.
Fast forward to the end of the school year… Clyde and I are officially mother and son! God is good and faithful. I would have never imagined on the first day of school that Clyde and I would be bonding in more ways than one. One of the most meaningful factors about our relationship is that I am very transparent with him. I share with him that he is my teacher. My son has my eyes. God uses him to teach me about myself and how to respond to others in need. God uses his eyes to help me see things from a different perspective. I told Clyde that I gain a better understanding of life and God through his perception of life and who God is. It is amazing to see how much pride he takes in knowing that he is a part of my growth just as much as I am of his or more. I encourage my son daily by reminding him that as he continues to learn about God, life, and people it is his duty to teach others what he has learned. Make a mistake, learn from the mistake, testify and share with others what was learned. This helps him to become a realistic, touchable and empathetic role model.
One more thing. After about three months of living with us, Clyde woke up one morning and ran downstairs to the kitchen declaring that God showed him what he was supposed to do with his life and the reason he was born. Imagine a five-year-old, running downstairs screaming, “I’ve got it! I’ve got it! I know what God wants me to do!” 1. Tell people about God and 2. Play baseball. What’s so special about this is that, just three months prior, he was unexpectedly removed from his family and wasn’t sure if he would ever get to see his mom again whom he loves so much. Clyde had already declared that he had forgiven the people who had taken him away “(CPI/DCF)” and he still loves everybody. It was after he had openly and willingly forgiven “everybody” that God revealed to him what he was born to do. What did I learn? I learned that you really won’t know who you are and have an understanding of your full potential until you demonstrate love and forgiveness. Moms, please tell your sons how important they are to your personal and spiritual growth. Tell them that they have your eyes. You want to see what they are seeing so that you can be a better mom.
I was his Principal. Clyde was my teacher. Now we are mother and son and together we are students in the school of love and forgiveness.