Between the World and Me by Ta-Nehisi Coates:
Nothing between us was ever planned—not even you. We were both twenty-four years old when you were born, the normal age for most Americans, but among the class we soon found ourselves, we ranked as teenage parents. With a whiff of fear, we were very often asked if we planned to marry. Marriage was presented to us as a shield against other women, other men, or the corrosive monotony of dirty socks and dishwashing. But your mother and I knew too many people who’d married and abandoned each other for less. The truth of us was always that you were our ring. We’d summoned you out of ourselves, and you were not given a vote. If only for that reason, you deserved all the protection we could muster. Everything else was subordinate to this fact. If that sounds like a weight, it shouldn’t. The truth is that I owe you everything I have. Before you, I had my questions but nothing beyond my own skin in the game, and that was really nothing at all because I was a young man, and not yet clear of my own human vulnerabilities. But I was grounded and domesticated by the plain fact that should I now go down, I would not go down alone.