When my daughter was in preschool, her school sponsored a Father and daughter “Prom”. This was an opportunity for Fathers and their daughters to have a wholesome evening together and it was a wonderful opportunity to show my daughter what it meant to be treated like a lady. It was ridiculously cute to see the dads and their daughters, all dressed to the 9’s. It was a magical evening and the look on my daughter’s precious little face as we took our “prom” pictures – priceless!
The most memorable moment of the evening was the unveiling of our “Prayers for our Daughters”. The Dads were asked to write an open and honest letter to their daughters about our hopes and dreams for their lives. We were supposed to read to our daughters that evening and then save it to read to them again when they turn 18 years old – a wonderful idea. Putting on paper my hopes and dreams and my commitments to my daughter was an amazing and powerful exercise – one I thought was a once in a lifetime experience.
But all that is about to change – I am proud to announce that my son was born recently and to say it was anything short than life changing-ly magnificent, would be the understatement of the century. I figured now is as good as time as any, to write my son a similar prayer – so if you will indulge me, here is an excerpt of the Prayer I wrote for my son.
My dearest son,
The moment you were born, through my joy and amazement at your arrival, I said the following prayer for you to express how much of a blessing you truly are.
I am ecstatic and deeply humbled that you chose me to be the one to teach you what it means to be a man. I hope that I am able to convey to you the wisdom that I have obtained so that you may live a prosperous and fulfilling life.
I pray that your spirituality will always guide you to take the road less traveled.
I pray that I live a life of integrity, loyalty and selflessness so that you may emulate the example I attempt to be for you.
I pray that you will find someone to spend that rest of your life with whom you can cherish and love, as much as I do your Mother. I pray that our relationship is one that you will strive to have when you find your soulmate.
My prince, you will come to learn that you come from a long line of men who have served their country, provided for their families, and preserved the entrepreneurial spirit that is so evident in our family.
I pray that I will be able to convey the meaning of your heritage. I will do all that I can to teach you to have pride in your family and where you come from. Although some may be confused or even express hate towards you, I pray that I will be able to show you the proper ways to combat their ignorance and perhaps enlighten those you encounter.
I pray that when your family, community or nation calls you to serve, in whatever capacity that might be, you not only heed that call but you run towards it with open arms.
I pray that I can teach you how to defend the defenseless, be a voice for those without, and look for opportunities to display courage in places and situations where there is none.
I know I have prayed for a lot but that’s the thing about prayer – there is no limit and there is no limit on what you can become and I look forward to guiding you all the way.
Above all, I simply pray that you will grow up to be the best man you can possibly be.
Love, your Papi