***As this new baby approaches I find myself wondering why she will be my baby. Each one of my babies has been my baby for their own wonderful and unique reasons. I’ve spent time during this pregnancy pondering and being grateful for the reasons why each baby has been so special. For instance, I have come to recognize that the timing of each child has been a huge blessing. And of course, each of them have their own talents and traits that I have fallen in love with. Anyway, thinking about these things has made me want to record them. I want each of my children to know why they were my beloved babies, and share with them some of the ways that they blessed me and others during that stage of life. After considering it, I have decided that I am okay with you knowing why too, so read if you’d like. If you don’t that’s okay too. These letters are really for them. I’ll start with the oldest and these letters will be all of my blogging for a while. When you start saying your naughtiest of naughty words on the blog it’s clear you need a break from your usual thing. Plus I just I feel like being a bit more serious and recording some things particularly close to my heart. Here goes…***
My Dearest Jack,
You were my first baby, and from the second of your birth I have been so, so proud to be your momma. You should know that you were beautiful… the most beautiful, perfect baby I’ve ever seen. You had gorgeous hair and a perfectly shaped head and the sweetest face. And you were amazing! Everything you did filled me with wonder. I’ll never forget the day you got your first tooth. One day I looked in your mouth and there it was! I was so surprised and so proud of you! You grew a tooth! On your very own! What an clever boy!
I absolutely loved getting to mother just you all day long. A mother of more than one child only gets that experience once, and I feel so blessed and privileged to have had that special time with you. I still look back on those days we spent together in Holladay and downtown SLC with fondness and a sense of longing. Our life was simple and slow. My everything was wrapped up in taking care of you, teaching you, enjoying you, loving you and making you happy. What a wonderful little buddy you were! Those were good, good happy days…some of the best in my life.
I loved you for being opinionated. I loved you for being intelligent. I loved you for being quirky. I loved you for being strong. I loved your bright red hair, your chubby cheeks, and your thin, wiry body. I loved you for being serious and easy to tease. I loved you for being silly on occasion too. I loved you for being so much like me. Oh Jack. In big and small ways alike you and I are so, so similar. I feel a special bond and understanding between us because of it that I hope we’ll always have. I knew you came with my brand of silly when we would sing and rock together before bedtime. You would look at me with wild eyes and this ridiculous expression on your face, almost challenging me not to laugh. I’d try to keep singing, but before long I’d let a little giggle out, then you would too, and we’d end up laughing till it hurt, sharing a joke that was perfectly suited to our funny bones. It was one of my favorite moments of the day! And I love that you and I still find the same things funny.
I loved you for the effect you had on others. We often visited with an older woman named Ruth who had no family and very few friends in her life. Oh how she loved to see your smiley face! You were so cute and so happy at her home. It was a pleasure to bring you to her and watch you spread some sunshine into her lonely life. Also, when you were just a wee thing I met a friend who bore scars from her childhood that no one should have to endure. You were a source of healing to her. Meeting you… such a darling, good baby boy who just happened to have the same name as the person who had so badly wounded her… brought her heart peace and helped in her in the final stages of her healing.
And hers was not the only heart you helped heal. You did it for me too Jack. Oh how I needed someone to love and care for when my mom died! Oh how I needed your sweet presence in my life! You’re the only grandbaby Grandma Lizzi got to know in this lifetime, and I know how much it meant to her to get to experience that. Thank you for being her grandboy. Thank you for giving her a reason to spend precious, precious time with me so close to her sudden passing. You were only a month old when she left us, and those hours she spent caring for the pair of us will always be a treasured memory for me. I wish you could remember it too! We had so much fun together, the three of us!
Oh Jack. You were such a special baby. You were my baby, and so, so easy to love. Thank you for making me a mother. Thank you for teaching me what that means and challenging me to grow.
You’ll never know how much I love you till you have a child of your own!