Dear 18-year-old Monster,
Well, it’s 2029.
So many amazing things already have happened during your lifetime.
Hillary put in a solid eight years as the first female president and finally convinced dudes in Washington that women have brains, not just bodies.
That really paved the way for the Fey-Poehler ticket, and that’s why your world is now a much better place than mine was growing up. Oil companies funnel their profits into green energy. Obesity is now a thing of the past. Tyler Perry quit putting men in drag.
And cheese is now free and 100 percent healthy for you.
With so much honesty and wonderfulness happening, I feel I have to come clean with you about a few untruths during your toddler years.
Your father and I lied to you. A lot.
No, the permanent markers were never actually broken. I hid them because you wanted to draw all over your coloring books, the carpet, the walls and your face.
No, one of your action figures didn’t “die.” You broke it and would get frustrated every time you would play with it. So I threw it out, and when you asked where it went, I told you it died. I don’t even know that you had a concept of death at the time. But the answer satisfied you and you never asked for it again.
My sweet little boy, I broke many promises to you.
There were numerous car rides during which I told you we would see a giraffe/play with your girlfriend, Cady/eat fruit snacks or cake or ice cream/fly in an airplane “when we get home.”
I took advantage of your wee little memory, and by the time we got home, you had forgotten you were promised we would do those things.
And oh, the tricks we played on you.
I can’t tell you how many things I could get you to do by telling you that you would get a cookie. And they were the mini-cookies – not the full-sized ones I used to get when I was little.
I could get you to clean up your coloring books, eat your dinner, finish your milk, clean up your dinosaurs, change a diaper, happily put on your pajamas and sit quietly on the couch – all for the promise of just one cookie. I would start promising you a cookie at 4:30 and you wouldn’t get it until after 7 p.m.
And yes – there were nights when you would forget about the cookie, and so would I, and you never got it.
Oh, my little boy is now a grown-up man. As you are packing your things this weekend to head to the University of Michigan to play for Coach Tom Brady, I hope you can forgive us for these deceptions.
One day, you may have children of your own. When you do, I hope you feel you can come to us, and, with the tired, sad eyes that every new parent has, ask us for advice.
And I hope you understand when we tell you, “Just lie to them. They’ll turn out fine.”
Love you always,