The first time I heard the song Same Love by Macklemore and Ryan Lewis I was in my second trimester with our first child. The opening birth scene of the video brought up the emotions that many moms feel during pregnancy. Fear about the unknown of our upcoming birth, anticipation of joy when holding our baby for the first time, and worry of being responsible for the life of a little human being. As the song played, even more thoughts surfaced and as I listened to the song time and again it became so much more.
I had then and still have hopes and dreams for our son. As I processed the lyrics so many ideas started to overwhelm my brain. I started to consider the world as I know it and had an inner conversation about if it was “right” or “fair” to bring a baby here. There can be a lot of ugly on our earth and we purposefully chose to bring another soul into it. Then, I experienced a deep and sincere hope that our child could be a part of changing our culture for the better. I also took the time to indulge in serious reflection about the gender of our baby. We didn’t know what we were having and I started to wonder about things like the sexual orientation of our son or daughter. I worried about his or her safety and said prayers that our child would have a beautiful life filled with love despite their choice in partner.
This brings me to that place I presume most moms have been at some point. The hopes and dreams we have for our children. It’s hard to know where to draw the line on our expectations. I am still not confident that what I want for our son will be what he wants. My husband and I have had many conversations about this, as well, and have asked many questions. What sports will or won’t we support? What if he wants to play an instrument or try out for the dance team? What if he fails or ends up in jail? What if he becomes the next Steve Jobs? Where might he go to college?
We tell him hundreds of times each day how much we love him. We kiss and hold him. We celebrate his accomplishments and empathize during his tribulations. To us, these are just the things we do to create a certain life for him. But, we have come to understand that everyone parents differently. Some people will teach their children to hate our child because of his nationality, religion, social class, or sexual orientation. We can’t protect him forever from the world, or from becoming things we don’t wish for him.
We also put him in swimming lessons at 11 months of age and took him to tumbling at 14 months. We give him undivided attention and work on his gross and fine motor skills, language, socialization, reading, and healthy choices. We don’t leave him often and he rarely stays with anyone other than select family members. We picked the best school we could access in our community. So, in some ways we are already projecting our hopes of him being a well rounded, intelligent, polite and hard working person. Some may not agree, but these things are right for our family and all I can wish for is the tolerance the song preaches.
So, the only thing I am certain about today is that we have made a commitment to love and support our son on the most unconditional level we are capable of. We want to be good parents but also good listeners. We want to teach him right from wrong while also fostering his talents and honoring his desires. We want to share our high expectations with him while providing the tools he will need to meet them. And, most importantly, we are trying to master the patience and humility it will take to see him through failure and support him as he creates his own life through choices we may not agree with.
I still enjoy the song and experience the same emotions when watching the opening scene of that video. Overall, I am moved by the hope I feel for the good things I believe my son will do with his life. I count my blessings and pray that he embraces tolerance while finding contentment, joy, and passion in the life he lives. I want pure love for him, even if it’s a “Same Love.” I want him to be happy and I want to remember that his found joy may be different than anything I have ever imagined for him.Maternity and newborn photos by Sommer Grogan at BOKA Images.