Tuesday, December 13, 2011

About a boy

There is a boy I know. He is fourteen. His pain is palpable. He is anguished. He can't sleep. He doesn't eat. His father has let him down. Again. His mother is busy trying to make a better life. His family loves him. He loves his family. He is so sad. School is not high on the list of 'things to do'.

He is smart. Really smart. He is kind. He is funny. He is polite. He usually doesn't get his homework done on time. He says he doesn't know why. He says when he sits down to do it he feels like he is going to die. I believe him.

I love him. He will, God willing, be a strong, good man when he finishes growing up. I worry for him. I worry about him. And yet I know there is something so profoundly good about this boy.

I watched him do something today, something for others, that he likely would not have chosen to do on his own. I am writing this so I remember today. So I remember the next time his homework is late, or he misses the bus, or he forgets his assignment, the next time I am tempted to be cranky at him for 'letting me down', that he is a boy struggling with things boys shouldn't have to struggle with. He is boy who, despite his string of bad luck, put it all aside today to do something for people he didn't know, with people who needed his support.

Today. He shone. He shone as only a fourteen year old boy could. He shone from the inside out. And he was radiant.

So I wept today. Because he was beautiful. Because his life sucks, and yet he showed up. Because I know he is a good soul, and I believe in him. Today I want him to know I believe it will all be okay.

And, as you are reading this, maybe you can pray to whomever, or whatever you pray to that this boy will make it. I don't want to let him down. I don't want any of us to let him down.

I pray he sleeps well tonight. Tonight he deserves to sleep well.


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