Those were the words my 15-year-old son left me with when I dropped him off at his mom's place tonight.
Tonight -- after I bought him some new glasses that, as it turns out, will almost exactly mimic the glasses worn by his favourite rock star, Dallas Green of City and Colour, also the lead singer of Alexisonfire.
He's going to their concert (at the Burton Cummings Theatre...yes, that Burton Cummings, of the Guess Who) with about five of his friends. And I am not there. I am not a fly on the wall to watch him grow yet again.
His face has been attacked by acne. His hormones are going like hell. He's growing up faster than I can keep up with him. He's giving me the evil eye, the surly attitude at times, the "I know everything" thing.
I want to be inside his soul, I want my wisdom to protect him, my heart to shield his from it all. I want to be there to see him laugh, cry, to have his Doh! moments, to be there when his girlfriend dumps him.
I want to be inside his wide eyes tonight as he marvels at what someone with a guitar and a good voice can do. I want to be inside his nose to smell the dope that's being smoked, and to wonder, inquisitively, what that is.
I want to be his ear drums, to hear live what he listens to repeatedly on my computer as he plays his games on it, over and over. I want to be his feet, tapping to the music that he absolutely loves.
I want to be there in case he gets into some trouble, except he needs to learn how to handle that on his own. But most of all, I wish I was there just to witness the wonder that he'll be feeling.
All I can do is remember those words from my 15-year-old son: I love you. Words I say to him and my daughter all the time. And words that I never tire of hearing back from them.