I look at my little boys. Seven. Five. Two.
I look at their eyes. Looking up to us. Watching our actions. Seeing our choices.
I look at their ears. Hearing our voices. Listening to see if our words match our actions. Noting our tone. Listening for our honesty. Listening for our opinions. And our judgments.
I look at their mouths. Turning up because they know what it is to be happy. Turning down when they don’t get their way. Yelling when they are upset. Mimicking our tone. Echoing our phrases.
I look at their tiny hands. Sometimes hitting. Sometimes hugging. Writing. Turning pages of books. Learning how to be used.
I look at their minds. I can see them turning, spinning, making up the world inside of themselves. Dreaming of being an adult. Dreaming of all the possibilities in front of them.
I look at their hearts. I feel them. When they are held close to me. I feel that their heart beats just like anyone else’s. And is capable of the same feelings mine is. I know they can love. I know they can feel.
I see their emotions. Their attitudes. Their character. Their humanity. Forming before me. Helping them unbecome babies, each day. Growing them into those who will be making the world in just a few rings inside the trunk of a tree.
I see them. The good. The truth inside of their souls that are pure and full of love. I see their faces. The ones that start with hope. Their eyes. The ones that see all people equally. Their hands. That extend to each person, with the same acceptance. Their mouths. That speak kindness to and of strangers and the unknown. Their minds. That are made to be open. And ears, that are meant to listen. And learn. Their hearts. That want to love. That are conditioned to love. And are made to accept and grow for others.
If I use my mouth for kind words. My eyes for seeing the good. My ears for listening intently. My hands for reaching out. My mind for deeper thinking. My heart for loving. My whole self to be an agent of change and light. If I can be the good. The good they see. Along with my husband. Then maybe, my children will learn from that example.
These children of mine. They remind me. To hope. To dream. To believe. That the world is mostly good. Even when the news is mostly bad. Mostly heartbreaking. Mostly scary. I look at them. The sum of all their parts. And I know that our future can be bright. If we teach our children well. If we make it our mission to shape them with love. If we give them a chance to breathe goodness into the wind. And have it blow back in their favor.
If we can be the good they know, we can help them all shine goodness into the world as they grow.