In just over two months, you’re due to arrrive. It’s Valentine’s Day Friday and I’ll be spending it in Pennsylvania with your dad, your grandma Lulu, your grandpa Pops, your Auntie Maura, Uncle Thai and your cousins, Hugh and Aibhlín.
I can’t wait for you to meet all of them. I can’t wait to meet you.
I’ve been thinking a lot about love lately. I’ve known romantic love, friendship love, familial love. The love I have for you is already different. Every time I think of you, I think about how my job is to love you and protect you, feed you and shelter you and help you feel warm and safe. This love will be unconditional in a way I’ve never known. When you get older, I will still feed you and shelter you, but I will also need to teach you about the world, right and wrong, how to be a good boy and then a good man. I will need to teach you compassion and strength, endurance and patience, how to deal with both failure and success with grace. One day, I’ll have to teach you what it means to love someone like I love your dad, whether this be for you a woman, a man or both.
Your dad has said that he hopes you’re more like me. I hope you are like your dad. I hope you retain that childlike wonder and playfulness that he still has at 38-years-old. I hope you are curious about things, like to explore, like people and are open to giving people a chance — something at which your mom isn’t always so good
I know you’ll be stubborn, because both of your parents are. I hope you’ll know the meaning of hard work and of the reward that comes from a job well-done. Equally, though, I hope you will feel satisfaction by bringing a smile to another person’s day. Life isn’t black or white, and it’s not just about what you do for a living, the college you went to or how much money you have in the bank. I’ll always want you to feel secure in the world, emotionally, mentally, physically and financially, but I also hope you are a good person who treats people well and expects others to treat you well.
I’ll mess up with you. I’ll try not to, but inevitably I’ll do something that you will later think has scarred you. I apologize ahead of time for that. It’s the plight of all moms and dads no matter how hard they try. I hope whatever scars I leave you with are small and fade with time.
These are my hopes for you, but even though I have no idea who you are yet, I already love you. Everyday I imagine what it will be like to hold you and stare into your little face and feel your breath as your tiny chest rises and falls. You are so wanted by both your mom and dad, who took time to explore and travel and grow their careers and make their fair share of mistakes before deciding that they were ready to be parents. I hope our experiences before you make us better parents. I know our experiences after will be that much better because we get to share them with you.
Happy baking in there for the next 9.5 weeks.
Image by moonlightbulb