Dear Baby O,
Your dad and I spent last week working on your nursery (and a ton of other projects). Your room needs more work than probably any other in this old house and it’s still not yet ready for your arrival (in just 11 weeks!). As we were working away, I couldn’t stop thinking about how weird it is that you will have a room designed specifically for you. I thought about and prayed for all the babies I’ve held that live in grass huts or share a small apartment with their 6-person family. I love getting to be creative with space and design something beautiful just for you, but I desperately want you to know that you would be just as loved if we didn’t have any baby products or a nursery for you. I hope you don’t ever get caught up in the American dream or feel entitled. I want to raise you in a way that frees you to live contentedly in the biggest mansion or the smallest grass hut.
Please note in the pictures that your dad doesn’t have a drop of paint on him and I have it all over me. Don’t worry- we are still ordering windows and floors and a crib. You’re expensive, baby!
Recently, I asked your dad if he felt like we were ready to be parents. “Isn’t there anything you want to do or any place you want to go before we’re caring for kids for the next few decades?” I asked urgently.
That dad of yours, he’s so steady. He reminded me that we’ve already traveled the world, done the grad school thing, worked our dream jobs, spent years building memories with friends, cared for many kids. “We’re more than ready for this.”
He’s right, you know. In fact, I’ve been waiting to be a mom since I can remember. I’m so grateful for the experiences and the life I got to live before becoming your mom, but now there is nothing I’d rather be or do. Don’t get me wrong, I still dream big dreams and want to jump in and get my hands on a lot of opportunities, but I feel a deep sense that it’s time to put my energy and efforts towards raising little Olsons. What an honor.
Here I am playing the role of the mom. Your Uncle Kyle was the cowboy. That was his only role for years.
One thing you should know is that your dad and I both have strong instincts to fight for justice and for people in need. We’ll have to figure out how to instill this in you and also protect you at the same time. Tonight, while your dad was working, I had to call 911 because of a situation down the street. I was disappointed that the other bystanders left me with a distraught woman to wait for the police. And I was even more disappointed that after an hour and four 911 calls, the police had not shown. A teacher that pulled up to the scene took one look at me and told me I needed to leave NOW. I wasn’t really scared for myself, but her look made me remember that I now have to protect you at all costs.
I wonder how having you around will affect the daily decisions your dad and I make to get involved when people need help on the street? Will we feel differently about inviting ex-cons and those that are homeless to come in and share a meal? I pray that our choice to live in this crazy city will enrich your life and not harm it. I pray your dad and I will have real wisdom as we continue to serve others and provide a safe environment for you to grow.
Well, Baby O, after locking myself securely behind two iron gates and an alarm system, I’m headed to bed. One more thing though- I want you to know that I already love your personality and think you’re the coolest little kid. Today, your kicks were so strong and you were moving so fast and furiously that I involuntarily said, “wow” out loud to no one. I think you want to join us out here just as badly as I don’t want to be pregnant anymore. But you stay in there, okay? I love it when you’re quieter, too. You’ve been resting your foot in my left ribcage while you sleep and you’ll occasionally get a burst of hiccups. I suspect you’ll be a kid that’s always moving, but I secretly hope you will like to cuddle as well. You’re going to be well-hugged.
Your Mom (ah! feels so strange to type that!)