To my One Year Old – A Letter of Hope

Dear Little One

When I wrote my first letter to you, you were still in my tummy. I had a feeling that I was going to learn a lot from you, and it’s turning out to be true.  After all, I am just a one-year-old mommy now.

And I’m learning so much. Time has made physical changes right before my very eyes.  One day, I was carrying around an invisible little bundle, the next day you were a tiny being I could cuddle in my arms.  And now, you are all stretched out and stumbling out your first steps, saying your first words, and nibbling on real food as if it’s the most normal thing in the world.

I fear that if I do not write them down, I will forget these precious moments and the beautiful but hard lessons I’ve learned by looking with new eyes at what used to be ordinary and mundane.

I try to take it all in as you change from baby to boy, and my heart expands with a kind of love it has never known, drawing me closer to the Father’s heart.

I love watching your face and the honesty of your endless expressions as you discover new tastes and sounds, the feel of sand beneath your feet, and the pure delight of the ocean wrapped around your skin.

Over the years I have learned to suppress so many feelings and adjust my behaviour in order to be culturally acceptable or to be compatible with the social norm.  Because I feared rejection or tried to impress those around me.

But you?  You still get to cry when you feel sad and scream when you are angry. To express every single emotion – no explanation needed. I’m taking notes to enjoy these moments for what they are and to embrace even the tears of sadness because “this too shall pass” and in a moment we will find something to laugh about again.

I wonder what it must feel like when you fall down or can simply not get what you want. You can certainly scream like it’s the end of your little world.

One of life’s hardest lessons is “not getting what we want”. It is a never ending lesson and goes hand in hand with learning to be grateful for what we have.

We both have so much to learn and yet most of the lessons I’m learning from you requires some “unlearning” on my part – like how not to see color or status or condition and reach out to all other children and even animals with equal passion and curiosity.

That doesn’t mean we have to invite them all in, because there are dangers in this world I wish I could keep you from forever.  Like the other day when you chased the chickens to the end of the yard, and I saw a snake in the grass. With my heart racing in my chest, I quickly whisked you up and carried you inside.

I have to be cautious on your behalf, but I would be delusional if I thought I had power to always protect you. It’s a jungle out there, after all.

So like millions before me, I resort to prayer and give your little life back into the Hands of the only One who can truly watch and protect you.  I honestly do not know how unbelievers manage without God.  If I believed that it was only up to me to keep you from all harm, I would have become either completely paranoid or overprotective.

I pray that God will not only take care of you but will also keep on showing up in many undeniable ways as you grow up in a generation of rebellion and great unbelief.

I hope that you will grow to believe in the One True God, not only from what we say but also from how we live….just like you seem to learn most things – through observation and imitation. You will also see us fall and fail, but by the grace of God, may we all get up again and keep on walking.

I also pray that God will keep on reminding me never to take any of this for granted. I pray for all the other mommies and babies out there, especially the sick ones, and I also pray for those who are longing for babies of their own.

I love you and hope that there will be time for many more letters, lessons, moments, and discoveries.

In the meantime, let us make the most of this day, today, for tomorrow is not promised to anyone.

All my love

Mommy

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