This letter is for you. It is not about you. That is a story for you to tell. One day your voice will be the perfect pitch to orate your own plot line and I promise to listen to it. This letter, however, is about when you first entered my life and how in such a short period of time you deconstructed it, altered it, and became an important part to my story. As I reflect on my three week trip home to Canada, I concede it did not go as planned – but it did go according to a plan. The trip was not supposed to be about you but in hindsight the trip was all about you. You, Charley Ferrous Young, were born on October 26, 2015, under the power of the eighth astrological sign in the Zodiac, Scorpio. With your pink cheeks, intent gaze, fire hair, and long fingers, you are undeniably your daddy’s son.
I thought about this blog post for some time. I originally thought about explaining my many Canadian adventures – starting from our visit to Ainsworth hot springs, to Elk spotting in our backyard, to visiting friends and family – but that seemed too chronological, too descriptive, too easy. Instead I opted to write you a letter about what your entrance into this world meant to me; how in the blink of an eye you made me forget about materialism; made me refrain from superficial conversations; and made me pause and breathe. While I enjoyed trampling on pine needles, listening to coyote cries, travelling by car instead of bike, savoring every homemade meal, sleeping in my childhood home, catching up with old friends, and enjoying time with family, your birth and life taught me four important lessons.
First, people are generally good and caring. Whether they travel from afar, lend an ear, offer a cup of tea, propose a new perspective, or are simply present (whether in person, by phone, or by internet), friends and family ensure that you are never alone.
Second, the source of hurt often stems from uninformed opinions. One only needs to read Facebook posts on, for example, the debate in Canada regarding the right to wear the niqab at citizenship ceremonies, the recent attacks in Beirut and in Paris, and the Syrian refugee crisis to get an impression of how badly people are uninformed about current events, about human rights, and about human suffering. I am especially shocked and sad about the misconceptions we Canadians hold regarding addiction and mental health generally. These misconceptions, stereotypes, biases, and negative assumptions are not only held by a few but shamefully saturate our entire community. Before sharing these preconceived views and biases, which are incredibly hurtful to those who are suffering, please inform yourself.
Third, to give thanks. It is so easy to vent, to create toxic energy, to criticize, or to offer negative comments but before you engage in a toxic soliloquy stop, breathe and give thanks for your life, your health and your loved ones. Be thankful that you had yesterday, that you are living today and you can experience tomorrow. Thank you Charley!
Fourth, when all else fails, play some Fleetwood Mac or Johnny Cash and go for a tempo run through the beautiful Canadian terrain. The beat combined with the crisp northern air provides the perfect distressing potion.
Until we meet again little one,
Always Your Aunt