The Game of Life

One weekend, not too long ago, Jaden wanted to play a board game. “Sure thing kid, pick out any one you want!” I was secretly impressed that my 9 year-old-video-game-addict wanted to play a game with his “uncool” mom. He came up the stairs with the Game of Life under his arm.

This wasn’t the same game of Life I played as a kid. There were airplanes and boats and the game board rotated every time you spun the number 1. We each picked out our color car and put our respective pink and blue peg in the diver’s seat. We both chose to go to college (secret happy fist pump from mom). Then Jaden landed on the “get married” space. I went to grab a pink peg and stopped myself. Instead I asked Jaden, “Are you going to marry a boy or a girl?”

Here’s the thing … in that split second, when I assumed Jaden would want a pink peg, I wanted him to know that he has a choice. He can choose who to love. He can choose who to marry. He can chose what color to drive or what college to go to, or not to go at all. But no matter what he choses, one thing remains the same … his mama will always love and support him. Now secretly I hope he goes to college and marries a sweet girl and into a family who will love him like their own. I wish this for all of my boys and not because I believe it’s the “right” way to live, but rather because it’s an easier way to live. Same sex relationships face many struggles that I cannot identify with. The world is hard enough as it is, living among society norms.

I want my boys to go up to be tolerant and loving. I want them to accept others just as they are, without judgement. I want my boys to know that their mom is a safe place. I am someone who will love them, exactly where they are. I heard it best at a conference: I want my children to grow up loving Jesus, loving the church, and liking to hang out with me when they are grow.

Jaden hesitated. He expected me to hand him a pink peg too. But he put on that silly smile of his and said, “a blue peg mama.” 

He was testing me … to see if it really was ok to marry a blue peg. I smiled at him, kissed the top of his head and put his blue peg husband in the passenger seat of his orange car. We didn’t discuss it anymore than that. We just played the game. (which I won 🙂 I don’t really think Jaden thought much of it either. But I do hope that a little seed was planted in his big heart that would grow into a strong confidence that I will love him no matter what game of life he chose to play. Mom can be a safe place.

Perhaps it’s the hippy part of me, perhaps the boys need to be encouraged differently, perhaps I’m wishy-washy. I do feel quite strongly that its not my place to judge others. That’s between them and the big guy upstairs. My job is to love and encourage each of God’s children. Correction, it’s our jobs to love and encourage each of God’s children.

Love, Mel


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