Dear Baby M,
You don't even have a name yet, but someday when you learn how to google, you might find this instead of a trove of facebook photos cataloging your life which your father and I won't be posting. You're just about 9 weeks away from your debut in this world. The experience of carrying you these past 30 weeks has given me such an appreciation for the herculean effort that is creating a human life. As a second born, I'm in awe that my mother knew exactly what she was getting into and still wanted to do it again for me. That gift is something I think about paying forward to you every day that you're in there, growing and preparing for your first gulp of air.
I realize of course that getting you here is just the beginning. Your dad and I will spend the rest of our lives doing everything we can to ensure your happiness and safety. Our hopes for you are vast but also simple: to be kind, to be curious, to be thoughtful. We are the product of many generations of our ancestors, whose efforts led to every little thing that fell into place to bring us here and to find each other. We plan to instill all of that in you (including but obviously not limited to: an appreciation for a good burrito and genuine Texas barbecue, a love of the beach and the mountains, a desire to travel and an enjoyment of books).
Please know that you have been loved long before you created the chemical reaction that caused two blue lines on a pregnancy test. I hope this knowledge sustains you on the days that you find this world to be a gritty, tiresome and brutal place. I can't protect you forever from all of that but I can share everything good this world has to offer with you. So rest up, little one, there is so much in store for you!
It might seem an odd choice to write this letter to a listserve of thousands of people scattered across the globe but in some way, it feels right to send it out into the universe. To those of you who are parents, I hope to be worthy of your courageous ranks. To those who are not, I hope you pause to consider all that it took to give you your shot.