Director of Intent

February 16, 2010

For the Boy

From a particular vantage point, the process looked quite simple. The contributor of a Y chromosome -me- must choose a paternal style, any parental style. Let's say my father, my grandfather, or whoever I want. Study it. Consider being raised by that father; that particular father. It's not about being a son, or, in general, about the formal, external adequacy between adulthood and childhood. 

Son, you can become my son, but I shall not become you, I shall not cast you. I shall not ask you to just look like my son. I want for you a world that is more intellectually engaging than one that you are just born into through a simple attempt to reproduce, represent, or repeat a given life cycle. That, frankly, would be uninteresting.

I look in your eyes, and anxiously wait to hear about your experiences as you become your own person, about all the changes you leave behind, about the times you feel lodged in stone, about the onerous presence of your father and how you struggle at the same time to be his son and to remain, or maybe vindicate your own self-fashioning. Our dialog is only a way to tell our story, to produce history.

I, too, will work on my own history. In the moments of solitude in my own life, I will carefully think about you, with only the additional advice of my muse, your mother, during the times she visits such thoughts. At the same time, I will be considering the way you explain your experiences -our conversations-, and the way I myself have tried to understand, feel, and think about the whole process, since the moment I first saw you blue and squirming for air to the moments that have yet to occur.

How it shakes out, the final paternal picture, is my exclusive responsibility. I will be the sovereign of what I can. Do not expect me to be faithful to your words, but only to you. After all, I am only your old man, and thusly human.

You will probably have questions. Please ask them. I am interested in all of them and will try to make sure that time does not taper the content of my patience.