Happy Birthday son, I love you.
You have waited patiently for this day and I know you have big plans to celebrate. Before you do, I wanted to tell you some things I wish I embraced when I was truing 18.
- Being a man is about your character. Make wise choices and well thought out decisions. Consider all your actions with the future in mind.
- Remember who you are. Decide on what is important to you, and what your values are. Don’t let anyone take that away from you. Don’t be afraid to be you.
- Intelligence and wisdom are not the same.Intelligence is the ability to learn. Wisdom is using knowledge and experience to make good choices. You can have both.
- Study each situation and have the proper perspective.
- You are good and kind, stay that way. Don’t let the ugliness of this world have any effect on you.
- Refuse to settle for second best.
- Be the very best you can be in all circumstances.
- Be respectful to everyone.
- Always take the high road.
- Don’t quit when the going gets rough. There is much to learn when you persevere.
- Know when you are wrong, admit it and ask forgiveness.
- See beyond the surface of those around you. Everyone is dealing with some sort of demon. Their smiles don’t necessarily mean happiness. Offer to help. When we reach out to others it brings meaning and purpose into our lives.
- If there is jealousy, or misunderstandings toward you repay the ugliness with kindness, love, understanding, and forgiveness. Love everyone, even those who are hard to love.
- You can accomplish anything you put your mind to, so don’t doubt your abilities. On the other hand don’t think too highly of yourself.
- There is no substitute for hard work.The process of working toward a goal is can be as rewarding as the achievement itself.
- Never stop learning.There’s a whole world to be explored beyond the classroom long after graduation.
- Refuse to have regrets.
- Keep an open mind. Others will often have ideas worth pursuing.
- Listen more than you speak. You will learn more by paying attention to others and people appreciate being heard.
- Volunteer at something you are passionate about.
- Keep your promises. Doing what you say you will do is uncommon. It’s one of the easiest ways to be successful
- Value your family.
- Forge friendships that last.
- Be safe.
- I love you no matter what.
The eighteen years you have been alive also happen to coincide with the best eighteen years of my life. That’s no coincidence. Your entrance into this world has profoundly changed mine. No words can adequately describe my love, my pride and my hope for you. I am blessed to call you my son. And today I am also pleased to call you a man.