Things My Son Needs To Know About The World

Things My Son Needs To Know About The World
Photo by Kelly Sikkema / Unsplash

Author: Fredrik Backman

Personal Rating: 3/5

Never go to a game of anything and shout, “You’re playing like a woman!” at an athlete, as though that word were the definition of weakness. One day, you will be holding a woman’s hand as she gives birth, and then that will make you feel more ashamed than you have ever felt about anything. Words matter. Be better.
I want you to always remember that you can become whatever you want to become, but that’s nowhere near as important as knowing that you can be exactly who you are.
Regardless of how many shortcomings the person you fall in love with might have, I can guarantee that you still come out on top of that bargain. So find someone who doesn’t love you for the person you are, but despite the person you are.
The realization that you will, from that moment on, draw all your breaths through someone else’s lungs hits you harder when you aren’t prepared.
And when you are standing there, in the storage section at IKEA, don’t focus too much on the furniture. Focus on the fact that you have actually found someone who can see themselves storing their crap in the same place as your crap. Because hand on heart: you have a lot of crap.
I just want you to know that I love you. Once you are older, you will realize that I made an endless line of mistakes during your childhood. I know that. I have resigned myself to it. But I just want you to know that I did my very, very best. I left it all on the field. I gave this every ounce of everything I had.
Sometimes the strongest person isn’t the one who hits. It’s the one who doesn’t hit back.
Because life is all about the small margins.
All kids sooner or later reach a point in their lives where they realize their dads aren’t actually superheroes. I am not stupid. I just wish for it to take as long as possible. I wish we could at least have a couple of Sunday afternoons together, you and I. Something that’s ours.
And that shirt will follow you for a lifetime. Longer than most people. It will become your superpower. You will meet plenty of people who won’t understand it, but regardless of where you end up in life, that shirt will give you ninety minutes of amnesia every week. And you will discover that, sometimes, that’s the most desired superpower of all.
So play. Learn. Grow up. Follow your passions. Find someone to love. Do your best. Be kind when you can, and tough when you need to be. Hold on to your friends. Don’t go against the direction of the painted arrows on the floor. You will be just fine.