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What I Hope You Remember

By Elissa Dickey
May 9, 2021

To my children:

I hope you remember the stars—how we stayed up late to see them, how we wished upon them.  

I hope you remember the laughter as we sat out at our patio campfires, asked silly questions, and sang karaoke songs.

All these new adventures were forced upon us, but enjoyed nonetheless. Yes, they were a distraction, especially at first, when the fear of the unknown with this virus was fresh and raw. But I hope you remember how we explored new hobbies and spaces, wide open and worry-free.

I hope you remember how we tried to answer your questions, even when we were searching for answers ourselves. Even when you asked the toughest question of all:

When will it end?

That answer is so much more complicated than we expected. In this new pandemic world, every family has a different level of comfort and must make their own decisions. But our family faces different challenges, so we must make different choices. Because of my illness, we must be more cautious.

I hope you don’t remember the tears this has caused, or the fears; the times you had to miss out on something; the times it felt like you were left behind when so many have moved forward. I hope you don’t always remember me as the sick mom, but the mom who tried to make life as fun and normal as possible during this scary, uncertain time.

We don’t know when this will end for us, but we know that it will. Until then, I hope you remember how proud you have made us, each and every day. We have marveled as you adapted to this new normal, watched you hold strong even when you don’t understand. You’re growing and persevering with grace and empathy, and we couldn’t be prouder.

Most of all, I hope you always remember how much we love you—how fiercely and completely. It drives every decision we make, and it’s how I know that, in the end, you will be just fine.

It’s how I know that you will shine brighter than the stars we wished upon.

Elissa Dickey

Elissa Dickey lives in Aberdeen, South Dakota with her husband and children. A former journalist, she is now an author who also works in communications at a university. Her debut novel, The Speed of Light, published March 1, 2021, with Lake Union Publishing.

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