Things I want my son to remember:

  1. Some days are just like that. Your favorite children’s book has been right all along. Lace up your shoes again the next day anyway, and try again. Always, always try again.
  2. Apologize with conviction. There will be times when you are wrong. Admit it. Leave out the “but”. Look them in the eye. Use the voice that was given to you by every ancestor that has come before and you learn from your mistakes.
  3. Pray. When you’re in your car. When you’re laying in bed. When you’re in the middle of math class. When you’re walking down the street. When you’re in the shower, or when you’re at a loss. Talk to God.
  4. Don’t just sit with the lonely kid at lunch—tell your friends to do it, too.
  5. The world needs leaders and helpers and doers, but it also needs compassion. You were born with bravery in your blood, but you still need to remember what it feels like to put your hand on your heart and remember that people are hurting. I hope your hands grow callouses from holding onto the edges of the broken.
  6. Hang out with people you can laugh with. The people you can think bigger and bolder with. The people you can dream with, scheme with, and hit it out of the park with.
  7. Stand up and cheer. Pump your fist in the air like some guys do, yell loud in the arena, and clap your hands. Be proud of your people. Encourage your people. Spur on your people. Fight for your people.
  8. There will be people who don’t like you. Maybe they don’t like how you talk or what you stand for or how you dress or how you dream. It will take you a long time, but eventually, you’ll realize that they don’t even like themselves.
  9. You can always come home.
  10. You are my greatest gift. I will spend the rest of my life reminding you that you are important. That you matter. That your life is powerful and purposeful and I will whisper in your ear every damn day that you are a match and you were born to

Set the world on fire.


This post originally appeared on Rebecca Cooper, Author

There’s just something between a mother and her son. This book is a must-read for all of the boy moms out there! Don’t have time to sit and read? You can listen here, on Audible.


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Rebecca Cooper

Rebecca Cooper-Thumann is an English teacher in a sleepy town in the midwest. She has published four novels and is currently working on a fifth. She has a precocious four-year-old son, she loves nachos and Jesus, and she tries to live her life every day rooted in courage and joy.