To My Son,
Wowzers. You're getting so big. Twenty-two weeks in my belly and you're the size of a papaya! Stop growing already. I mean don't but also kind of because there is very little room in there left. I swear. I am thinking about you loads and loads these days and I just thought maybe we should agree on some things now before we meet so when we meet we can just be wrapped up in the awesomeness of being in love with each other and not have to worry about all this technical stuff. So here we go...
Things I Promise You:
1.) I will love you so much, so fiercely, so completely, so fully, so RIDICULOUSLY, no matter what. I mean that. No matter what. No matter if you decide your mama being vegan is insane and you don't want to be vegan, no matter if you are gay/straight/bi/trans/peach/pink/grey/purple/blue/brown/red/ginger/blonde/brunette/bald/curly-haired/blue eyed/green eyed/brown eyed/hazel eyed/some crazy color I've never seen eyed, no matter if you're sweet or mean, no matter if you're the smartest or the bravest or the most talented or not, no matter any crazy thing you could ever do or say or think. I swear to you I will love you. No.Matter.What.
2.) I will try really, really hard to be patient. I cannot guarantee anything but I will try to remember myself as a youngin' and recall that I drove my parents and siblings and teachers and basically every adult almost completely insane with my incessant chattering and rebelliousness and curiosity and imagination and stubbornness; I will then try to remind myself you are part of me and thus probably going to the same. So I will try to sigh and smile and hug you and remember this is part of what will make you awesome and silly and inquisitive as an adult. I will also try to remember that you are part of your Dad-a who drives me CRAZY on the daily and that you may inherit some of this as well. Again, I will try to sigh and smile and swallow and say I love you and then shut my big mouth. I guess I will try to do that with your Dad more too.
3.) I promise to be silly and play and see things with my child-heart so I can help you be silly and play and see with your child-heart and foster that and your little spirit. Nothing is more serious than play my love. You learn so much with your imagination. I still learn so much from being silly and playing. The other day baby-sitting your soon-to-be new pals K (she'll be 3 when you get here) & C (he'll be almost 2 when you get here) reminded me that seeing a Disney film for the first time is SO exciting, that 3 hour naps are sometimes exactly what you need, that spaghetti is "stinky", that singing and banging on instruments and dancing LOUD is the best remedy to a bad day or moment, and that sometimes you just need to be a monster and practice your different levels of roaring. So we will be silly and play every day my little man.
4.) I promise that we will read from day one. Reading just like imagination helps you learn EVERYTHING. You and I will get familiar with Dr. Seuss, Shel Silverstein, Jeff Moss, E.B. White, A.A. Milne, Maurice Sendak, Margaret Wise Brown, J.K. Rowling, Eric Carle, Madeleine L'Engle, C.S. Lewis, Roald Dahl, Frances Hodgson Burnett, Ludwig Bemelmans, Norton Juster, J.R.R. Tolkein, Beverly Cleary, HR & Margaret Rey, Beatrix Potter, Bill Martin Jr., Judy Blume, Esphyr Slobodkina, Lois Lowry, Ian Falconer, John Steptoe, Else Homelund Minarik, Philip Pullman, Sandra Boynton, James Lincoln Collier, Judi and Ron Barrett, Jean de Brunhoff, Antoine de Saint-Exupéry, Mother Goose, The Brothers Grimm, Hans Christian Andersen, Aesop, Joseph Jacobs, Charles Perrault, and so many more. I promise they will open your world to new worlds, people, characters, emotions, and ways of thinking.
5.) I promise you will learn the value of teamwork via sports, creativity via art, and hardwork via music. I promise you that all aspects of your education will be encouraged. Dad will handle math, music, science, and some sports (soccer, tennis, golf, baseball and softball). Mama will help you with languages, history, art, theatre, and some other sports (swimming, football, basketball, and baseball). You will be able to experience it all, find your strengths, work on your not-so-strong areas with encouragement and appreciation for both. It's so important to learn baby and to encourage others to enjoy it with you.
6.) I promise to teach you to cook (Dad will help too!), to fold a fitted sheet & towels properly, how to do your own laundry, to drive in the city, to shop for groceries, to balance your bank account (Dad will definitely help!), to read, to swim, to jump in puddles and on your bed, to wish on stars and dandelions, to appreciate being outside, to treat everyone with love and kindness, to stand up for others and yourself, to whistle, to wink, to blow a raspberry/zerbert, to fall in love with classic t.v./cartoons/movies, to appreciate a day off, to always give it your all, that if you did your best that is enough, to be proud of yourself, to do the next right thing, to love all genres of music/books/films/t.v., to dance silly and proud, to sing loud and often, to love fiercely, to be loyal, to share, to be curious, to question, to think, and to be brave, to look people in the eye, the proper way to shake hands, how to properly wipe your butt and then wash your hands, that hugs and kisses and laughter are the best medicine, how to say please and thank you and I'm sorry, to forgive, how to throw a punch and that it should be only used as a very last resort if someone is hurting you or someone else and most importantly that thinking and talking to someone is the best way to resolve conflict-make a friend of an enemy, how to make the best sandwiches in the world, to give without expecting any return, that we all belong to each other and to this world, how to follow through, a strong work ethic, that honesty is always the best policy, to be kind, and most importantly of all that if you love and are loved-you have all you need.
7.) I promise to try not to judge your decisions or life based on my expectations of it. I will try really hard not to have expectations for your life and development and choices and let you be you. I will always pick you up anywhere you are, no matter the situation. If you find yourself at a party and are drinking and need a ride home I will get you no matter what. If you are ever uncomfortable anywhere I will come get you no matter what. I will reserve judgement and remember I, too, have made many mistakes.
8.) I promise to always be honest with you. Always. I will answer any question you ever have as honestly as I can. I will always help you seek truth in life and seek your truth and voice in your life. I promise that we can talk about anything, ever.
9.) I promise to encourage you to believe in magic. Real and not so real. Fairies and pirates and wizards and vampires and flying cars and monsters can exist. The magic of love exists. Magic is everywhere if you know how to look for it. And we will look for it my love.
10.) I promise to remind you every day that you are special and unique and that also you have to work hard for what you want and no one "deserves" anything but love and respect. The rest is earned. Trust, opportunities, awards, money, etc. all come after putting in the time and effort needed to EARN them.
11.) I promise to say good night and kiss you every single night you are alive as long as you will let me. And when that is no longer "cool" I will allow you your freedom and try to keep my tears for after you are asleep.
12.) I promise to advocate and fight for you tooth and nail. I would do anything for you my buddy.
13.) I promise to teach you all the best curse words, how to effectively use them, and words that are not to be used as there is no point to them other than to hurt someone. Those are truly the only curse words and we will promise to each other never to use them.
14.) I promise you loads of pizza and ice cream. Vegan or not. Every kid deserves pizza and ice cream. And sometimes for just no reason. Sometimes you just need to "treat yo'self" and we will my love.
15.) I promise we will celebrate holidays, birthdays, accomplishments of character, and acts of kindness and bravery with gusto! Get ready kiddo.
16.) I promise Disney and you will be best pals. No worries there my love, mama has got that on lock.
17.) I promise you can wear what you want to within reason. Stripes and plaids, do it dude. Glow in the dark rain boots with shorts, why the heck not? Anything mean-spirited or covered with naked ladies, no go guy.
18.) I promise to teach you respect for everyone. That everyone is equal. That in this world where people are not treated equally or respected we should strive to right that wrong. We should fight for fair wages, to end racism, to end sexism, to end ageism, to end sizeism, to end LBGTQ discrimination. To remember we all belong to one another. That we are not objects or pawns or less-than anyone else based on factors we cannot control. That the only thing that makes us less is hate in our hearts and minds, discrimination, closed-mindedness, intolerance, and cruelty.
19.) I promise to teach you that gender stereotypes are LAME. Girls can play football, boys can sing and dance, pink and blue are colors that anyone can love, that if you want a truck or a doll or both you can play with them. I will teach you that being a man isn't about what you wear or play with, neither is being a woman. I will teach you respect for the differences and similarities between both genders. Never listen to anyone who tells you different.
20.) I promise that no matter what, how bad or horribly mean you've been that moment or day, how sad or mad or glad you are with me or Dada, even if you say you hate me, I will always love you. That sorry is the first step, hugs and kisses help to solve hurts, that you can work hard to earn back trust and that I love yous are always important. And I will love you buddy, no matter what. It is my first and last promise to you. I will love you always and in all ways. Unconditionally. No conditions to that love my little man. Got that? Always and all ways kiddo.
Things for You to Promise Me:
1.) To be the best you that you can be.
2.) To always try your best.
3.) To keep an open mind and heart.
That's it buddy. Those pretty much cover it all. If you're being your best and trying your hardest and keeping your mind and heart open nothing can stand in your way and there is nothing you cannot accomplish and no friend you cannot make. You're going to be great, I just know it.
So get ready kid. January is right around the corner. Now that we have our agreements in place you can just snuggle up to me and Dada and Colonel Mustard and Zebbie. These pups cannot wait to meet you, they snuggle my belly all day and night knowing you're in there. You guys will be great brothers. Take care of them and they will take care of you. We'll all take care of you buddy. You just keep growing big and strong (and maybe kick somewhere other than the same spot that you have now internally bruised in Mama). Love you bug!