Before I got married, I never wanted to have children. I had my own philosophical reasons. The futility of life, the impossibility of changing the world, the existential difficulty of being, etc, etc. But I changed after I turned 30. My life felt monotone and meaningless. But most of all, I was selfishly scared of dying. As if by having a child, I would have lived through my children and the children of my children exponentially. Forever.
And when my first son was born -- his face stunningly identical to my own baby pictures -- I felt complete. I felt ageless. I felt immortal. He had my cheeks, my eyes, and my smile. I looked at him and experienced, for the first time, a kind of joy that I had never sensed before.
Today, he is thirteen and basically nothing has changed.
I still feel the same joy looking at his eyes, -- filled with hope staring at me-- if he tries to convince me into buying him the latest gadget. Or, I would still feel at the bottom of my failures as he complains, his eyes enraged, complaining about what his calls “this boring life”.
But, no matter how he feels or what he says, I would always feel the impact of his withdrawal and absence, when he keeps the silence in between our worlds by not looking at me. I become invisible before his eyes and the history repeats itself, as if I am looking at myself. And I feel restless, when I recognize my own revulsion, my own doubts, my own void, reflecting like in a broken mirror, inherited from my damned genes to this young man, defying the meaning of time and even my mortality.
My second boy was born only a few years after him, who looked totally different -- a smaller version of my husband--. Since then, my firstborn has lost his status of being the center of the world and therefore hasn’t stopped questioning my endless love.
”Do you love me more?” he’d like to ask.
I look at his eyes, begging me for a positive response, filled with impossible wishes. I know I would never be able to satisfy his desire. I would never be able to break this thick bubble surrounding him, pushing him, farther and farther, from his illusion of happiness and fairness.
“Mothers love the same all their children,” I’d say.
And I don’t follow him, running away -- mad as hell – and hitting the wall with his empty fist, to disappear in his room. I collapse, knowing I would never be able to run after him, telling him something fairy, because I know so well that the world has never been fair.
My son, looking like a copy of myself, drowning in his dreamland, hidden inside his books of monsters and witches behind a door, spoiled by the fantasy of an imaginary world, where he is the only child, the only one loved.
And I feel the dept of my failure slowly, blow by blow, by each coup to the wall, with each sound of his room door shutting, with each word out of his beautiful mouth:”Do you love me more?”
I crave for this incredible moment where I am able to show him a world where there is no limit, there is no comparison, there is no “more”, because the infinity has no limit and cannot be measured. Because this parallel world where he has chosen to live in, is floating within something else, something beyond our mortal dimensions. Something that he can name it “Love”, if he chooses to, if he doesn’t hide, if he let me reach to him, in his escape, and to grab his shoulders and to touch his soul, whispering in his soft ears: ”I love you.”
In my wildest dreams, my son identical to myself, stops his escape in a sudden move, comes back toward me, smiling, already transformed into someone else that I have never seen before.
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