I have always been a big fan of Anderson Cooper and have always been fascinated with the way he shies away from speaking of his family. For those of you who may not know (although I believe the whole world knows by now after reading, “The Rainbow Comes and Goes”), Cooper is the son of Gloria Vanderbilt. Yes, his mother is basically New York City Royalty !
When the book, “The Rainbow Comes and Goes”, came out a couple weeks ago, I naturally ran to get a copy. Enthralled by their relationship and the reason for his being so “private” about his upbringing made me want to know more. Being a mother of an almost three-year-old boy, this book and its premise instantly caught my attention on several levels.
Interviews with Cooper and Vanderbilt leading to the book release of, “The Rainbow Comes and Goes”, touched me even more. It seems Cooper began writing back and forth with his mother in order to know more about her, her past, her thoughts and his own upbringing. It struck me as such a powerful action on his part. He wanted to understand his mother more and truly know whom she was, beyond the name, beyond his memories in order to understand more about himself. And he wanted to do it while she is still alive and able to communicate with him in hopes they could build a deeper relationship and understanding of one another.
Speaking for myself, I know that I surely cannot say that I know who my mother truly is. She and I have never truly expressed our deepest desires, fears and so forth. I know what I remember from my childhood memories. However, any further than that, I know nothing and have truly not inquired. I don’t know who her first true love was, what she wanted to be as a young girl, what her regrets of life are or her still existing goals.
So, of course, I bought this book and read, cried, and wondered what my relationship with my son will be like as he grows up. Needless to say, I love this book! I would suggest it to any mother with a son or daughter. I think it helps us as parents to understand that we need to have open communication with our children, especially as they become adults. Our children need to know who we are; what are dreams were as well as our fears. These things make us more real to them, as people, as individuals. It lets our children know that we too have gone through all the same ups and downs they have gone through and see that we survived and so will they.
I have started journal since having read the book. In this journal I am initiating this communication for my son. It is a journal, which one-day I will give to him. It shares moments that he may not remember as he was too young. My feelings from that first moment I saw the flutter in the ultrasound and realized it was my son. The day he woke up and announced it was a picture perfect day and how I laughed and kissed him. This jounal will share my feelings, thoughts and hopes as he grows up. It will allow my son to know who I am, who I have been, and my experiences. This journal will be his window to things that I may not sit and tell him in person, but someday he will read and say…yes, that’s my mom.
So I would like to thank Cooper and Vanderbilt for their ever inspiring book. Thank you for opening up to the world and inspiring other parents to communicate with their children. In, “The Rainbow Comes and Goes”, you go through an emotional journey both from the son’s perspective and the mother’s. A journey that as a parent made me stop and realize that who I am shapes whom my son will be and who my son will be is reflected in our relationship.
I want my son to grow up knowing who I am. Knowing who I wanted to be. Knowing that I loved him more than anything in this world. I want my son to grow up knowing that through the all the ups and downs throughout my life, as the rainbow came and went…the love between us was always present.