One of my favorite of Emily’s 31 Days of Letters post last year was this one, a letter to her (future) baby boy. Flash forward to now, December 2013, and her & her husband Tim are expecting baby James in just a few short months! Also, let’s just acknowledge that they have the most adorable “baby boy” announcements EVER. (see picture below)
Emily wrote that letter to her future baby boy a long time before she found out he was on his way. Today, her and Tim are preparing their hearts and their home for his arrival. Emily is the first of my best friends to have a baby, and her announcement, though a surprise to them and to all of us, has brought me so much joy. I am so thrilled for my dear friends to welcome this baby into their family, and can’t wait to meet this little guy who is a combination of two people I so dearly love.
Dear Baby James,
You are such a lucky little baby.
There are only a few more months until the world gets to meet you, and I am so excited! You are set to be an adorable little boy, and probably VERY tall. I like to imagine which of each of your parents’ features you will have – maybe your Momma’s beautiful smile and blonde hair and someday your Dad’s perfect facial hair. You will grow up so dearly loved and cherished. There are so many sweet babies who come into the world and aren’t protected and cared for and known. This will not be the case for you. You will not lack for attention or discipleship, nor will you ever have to wonder where you fit in the world. You have a beautiful family that already loves you so much, I can’t wait for you to join them.
James, your Dad is so awesome. He is so smart and will teach you so many things in your lifetime. Listen to him, trust me, you won’t regret it. He will set a great example of love and care for you. Someday, you will hear about this God, our Heavenly Father, and you will think of who your earthly father has been, and you will smile and see those two images overlap. Your earthly father will love you with every ounce of his being, and he will not be perfect, but even in his imperfections, you will see his reliance on Christ. Watch also how he loves your Momma. Their marriage will teach you so many unspoken lessons about love and trust. Watch how he sacrifices for your mom and how he loves her intentionally and purposefully. From the moment you enter this world, your dad will be enthralled with you. Enjoy being loved more and more every minute for the rest of your life. (and your Aunt Holly and Uncle David will be there to take great pictures of everything)
James, your Uncle Tim is so cool. He will teach you about history and what it means to honor and restore the past. He has loved his sister, your momma, for all of her life, and he will love you deeply, as well. He will also teach you that tattoos aren’t so bad and that if you are passionate about something, you can follow that and find a way to work in your dream, no matter how unique it might be.
James, your Grandma Barb is so full of love that when you come into the world, you won’t be able to imagine what it would be like not to have her. She will love you fully and abundantly and will spoil you rotten with the love that a grandma is overflowing with. She will cook you the most delicious food and will walk with you and show you Summit Lake and all its glory. When you are a bit older, you will start to notice how she and Grandpa Greg always seem to have people over at their house. You will start to notice that this is different than how other people live, and will start to learn what it means to show hospitality and to welcome people in. There are few lessons that are better taught by example, and you will see it live and in person. I hope you grow up to carry on this tradition the way your grandparents and parents have done it, that you will be someone who creates a home where people are welcomed and where it is never an inconvenience to put on another pot of tea for good friends.
Finally, James, your Momma is the most brilliantly beautiful woman I know. She exudes grace and humility and beauty to the deepest part of her being. She is lovely on the outside, as your dad will surely tell her often. But more than that external attractiveness, it is her spirit that is the most lovely. She is quiet and gentle, the kind of woman that others admire and even envy. She teaches discretion and wisdom with her words and her actions, and truly sets an example for the people around her for what it means to love selflessly and sacrificially. She is silly and fun, with the great vocabulary that comes from being so well-read. Read with her and someday, read to her. This will be precious time that the two of you spend together, and you will surely cherish it for your whole lives. James, between you and I, let me tell you something that it might take you a while to learn. Your Momma will worry herself sick about you and your happiness and safety. Do me a favor – when you become a rambunctious teenager, will you please remember that and call when you aren’t going to be home on time? Learn to kill bugs and clean up dog puke, and someday, if you have a baby brother or sister, talk to Uncle Tim about how to be a good big brother. Tell your Momma that you love her every day from the first time you learn to say those words. Remind her that she can’t be a perfect mother, but that she is already the perfect mother for you.
I can’t wait to meet you, little James. I have a feeling you might be so cool that you go by your initials later in life – “Jag”. It’s got a good ring to it. We will talk about it later.