Dear reader: This post is a re-posting from April 8, 2010. My son recently had a traumatic brain injury due to an accident while trimming a tree. I will be unable to do my regular postings for awhile. The post below was written about my son. As soon as possible, I will continue with new and diverse posts. Thanks, in advance, for your understanding.
On June 22, 2011, my “Sonshine,” Erik G. Rogers, died from the traumatic brain injury incurred on June 11. May his memory be eternal!
Let’s make a slight change to the first line of the old Stevie Wonder song quoted in the picture of the sun to the left of these words.
You are the “sonshine” of my life
That’s why I’ll always be around,
You are the apple of my eye,
Forever you’ll stay in my heart.
So, I’ll bet you’re wondering what the meaning of the title and beginning poem is about. Well, first let me make it clear that I borrowed this from the first verse of Stevie Wonder’s lyrics to You Are The Sunshine Of My Life. Secondly, the word “sonshine” refers to my son and how he is like sunshine that breaks though the clouds on a gray day. Truly, a mood changing beam of brightness in a dark abyss!
Without getting too specific, our son has helped us recently through some emotional times. He has offered and given to us, my wife and me, counseling, friendship, support and love. I am so proud of the man he has become. His strength, tenderness, thoughtfulness, patience and rationality is something this father respects more than can be expressed with these words.
But, I am writing this as a post for more than just praising my son. I have used the first four lines of You Are The Sunshine Of My Life because of some strong feelings I’ve had lately AND its melody, of which I haven’t been able to get out of my head. As hinted earlier, the word sonshine is a “play on words” that I used in place of sunshine in the Stevie Wonder song.
Recently, after spending some time with our son, I found myself humming the melody of You are the sunshine of my life. That song, for some unknown reason, has always seemed like a happy tune to me. Whenever I have heard it on the radio, I have been uplifted by the song. It’s one of those songs that helps bring joy in my life. This is exactly what I have experienced as a result of the relationship I have with my son. He brings joy to my life!
As I was writing the previous paragraph, I couldn’t help thinking about my mother and one of her favorite songs, “Joy To The World,” by Three Dog Night. That song would help bring joy into her life each time she heard it. Also, she would often hum the tune to help change her mood from “down-to-up.” In my case, Stevie Wonder’s tune is not necessarily serving the same purpose as Joy To The World did for my mother; it is now representing someone who has, at times, helped change my mood from “down-to-up.”
As I reread what I had written so far, I realized that you might be wondering about the overall purpose for this post. Well, I wanted to not only outwardly announce my feelings for my son, but also use this as a way to learn about my feelings. As you may have read in my blog before, one of the purposes for it, is to use it as a forum to “write for learning.“ In this post, I wanted to learn what and how I really felt inside my mind. You see, too often in my past, I have not expressed what I really feel. As I am writing this, I am actively learning and expressing what I feel. Wow, this “writing for learning” is really working. Yea! :-)
In the past, I have been rightfully accused of not being an outwardly warm and demonstratively caring person. For example, I can remember, as a small boy, begging my mother to not make me hug my aunts when we traveled to Des Moines, Iowa for our biannual family visit. I can also reflect on numerous times, while my children were growing up, that I wasn’t as outwardly warm and caring as they, nor I, wanted me to be. Though I’ve not been as warm and outwardly caring in my body language, I have always felt, inwardly, a feeling of warmth for all of my relatives – aunts, siblings, children, etc. Perhaps, this post will help some readers “see” what feelings are really inside of me, but still not expressed outwardly.
So, what does “sonshine” mean to me? It means: like the sunshine strengthens and brightens my life on the outside, my son strengthens and brightens my life on the inside. He is my “sonshine!” :-)
How about a comment on sonshine or sunshine? :-)