My son Dakoda and I made a pact a long time ago. If we ever had to leave each other when we were still having a disagreement,we would always say “Luv U…BYE!”..no matter what. He is now 12 years old: a month away from being a teenager. It’s a bright beautiful morning in Delray Beach Florida and we’re on our way to school…late! We are not morning people.We’re night owls who thoroughly enjoy playing loud music and giggling,and dancing the night away. Morning always comes too soon and we scurry around trying to get out the door to school and work. I usually play my Mom role correctly and shoo him off to bed at an early enough hour to get his proper rest.However, this was one of those mornings when everything went wrong and we were both blaming each other for the looming fact that we were now late.
Our snippy attitudes towards one another escalated into a power play with the radio. If we weren’t going to listen to each other’s complaints, we could at least listen to our common denominator~music. He turned it up full blast. I turned it down and so went our “what seemed to take forever” ride to school.
He haughtily got out of the car, tossed his head in the air, turned back,looked right at me and for a quick moment, he said those treasured words…LUV U BYE! I turned away as if he didn’t exist. He walked slowly off towards the entrance of the school and looked back at me one last time. I had been watching his tall frame disappear into the concrete and when I saw that beautiful face again,I tried to say with my silence that “I wish I said LUV U BYE! to you. I wanted to, but my lips and heart stood frozen in time, and all I could do was watch him disappear into his day..rejected. he had the courage to take the high road,while i drove off down the low road of shame feeling helpless and alone.
I felt a tear trickle down my face as I pulled up to a red light. What is so important about “being right” in a fight or disagreement when you lose everything else? What if, God forbid,this would be the last time I ever saw my child?
I pulled over and started to write a letter to my son. I acknowledged his bravery. I told him what a treasure he was to me and how much I loved him. I told him I made a mistake and that I was sorry. I sighed a big sigh and I drove back to the school. I got to give him his letter in person, as the nice gentleman in the office called him out of his class.
As he came walking in, a big smile crept onto his face as he spotted me. I could tell he knew why I was there. He read part of the letter, then leaned over,gave me a hug and kiss, and hurried off towards the door. Just before he disappeared this time,he grinned at me and said “LUV U BYE!” I laughed,oh so gratefully back,”LUV U BYE!” My heart felt full and my head was held high as I skipped gleefully back to my car ever so thankful that love and listening to my heart once again prevailed!