Journal Kids

Sweet Child, This World May Not Be Kind—But I’m Always Here For You

Sweet Child, This World May Not Be Kind—But I'm Always Here For You
Written by Shannon Pannell


My dearest sons,

Mommy can’t. I love you with everything I am. But I can’t.

I can’t promise you will not be bullied for your looks or interests, or disliked by teachers or periodically misunderstood. But I can promise I will always love you just the way you are. I will always believe you, and I will always strive to make home a place you know your heart is safe.


I can’t promise you will always make As or always understand the material or always succeed at everything you try. But I can promise you that your best is enough, that I will help you with what I can and find others to help with what I can’t. I will never laugh at you when you fail nor say I told you so. I will create as many opportunities as I can for you to grow and develop into the best men you can be.

I can’t promise you will always get the ball. I can’t make every game a win. But I promise to happily play with you as often as possible, to teach you how to be a great sport and how to keep your temper when things don’t go your way. I promise to treat to ice cream win or lose, so you learn the fun is in playing the game.

I can’t promise every girl you fall for will fall for you. I can’t shield you from heartache, nor prevent you from making impulsive hormonal decisions. But I can tell you from experience that true love is worth waiting for, and the right girl will guard your heart like the precious treasure it is.

I can’t promise to always have the answers, to never be wrong and to make the right decision every time. But I can promise to admit I don’t know and help you look, to apologize when I’m wrong and that in every decision I am trying to do what is right by you.

I can’t promise to agree with all your life choices, including, but not limited to, career, house or spouse. But I can promise to support you whatever work you choose, to help you move and to love your future wife like she was always my daughter.

I can’t promise you will not be hated. For your faith. For your sex. For your skin color. I can’t promise people will be willing to listen to your side or be fair in their judgements. But I can promise you will always find love with me, and that I am always here to listen.

I can’t promise the world will get better (I think it’s actually getting worse) or that you won’t have to deal with the problems of the generation before you. But I promise I am trying to make the world a better place for you, and I am trying to give you the tools you need to survive whatever the world throws at you.

And if it overwhelms you, I promise I will always be your place of refuge. My arms will be open and my refrigerator full. I’m your mom. It’s what I do.

About the author

Shannon Pannell

Shannon Pannell married her childhood sweetheart 16 years ago, and is a stay-at-home mom to three boys, 10, 8 and 4, plus one daughter in heaven who would have just turned 12. She is currently living in North Mississippi, far away from her beloved Virginia beaches; and, despite a BA in English, has just started writing things for non-family (other people) to read. In her spare time, you can find her reading, binge-watching Numb3rs, and enjoying quiet wherever she can find it.