I’d tell you about that one time I had that horrifying anxiety attack and was too scared to sleep for fear that I wouldn’t wake up. And how the only thing that helped me breathe was a childhood memory that hit me so hard that I could remember what it actually felt like to nap on your belly while you were sleeping.
I’d tell you that you were good enough. I’d tell you that fish sticks and frozen pizza for dinner every night wasn’t so bad. And that expensive pair of sneakers we couldn’t afford don’t mean a thing to me now.
I’d tell you that you worked harder than you ever needed to, and I promise I always knew that.
I’d tell you that letting me see you cry never made you weak, but it made me strong. I can express myself without shame. I can’t think of anything more powerful.
I’d tell you that you raised a daughter with a genuine need to love people selflessly. Then I’d tell you that I’m not that person and blame it on my shitty generation, but I’ll work like hell the rest of my life to get there.
I’d tell you that it’s not your fault that I smoke cigarettes, it’s the dirty punks I hang out with.
I’d tell you that nothing makes me happier than listening to you laugh at the TV from my bedroom.
I’d tell you that you’re single because no woman will ever be good enough for my father. And when you find someone worthy, I’ll tell you she’s the third luckiest woman in the world, after my sister and I.
I’d tell you it’s okay that we moved a lot, because you are my home.
I’d tell you that moving out on my own was harder than I ever thought it would be. That it took moving out of your house to realize that I still needed you there.
I’d tell you that someday, if I make some money, I’d make sure you never had to work again. I’d buy you the trucks, the motorcycles, the house in the woods.
And finally I’d tell you that maybe I never went to college, but my dreams stretch farther than I could see. And my biggest dream is to take care of you the way you took care of me.