Dear Afton, Delaney, Vivienne and Charlotte,
I love you.
I know I tell you 20 times each day, but once more couldn’t hurt.
I had this vision for you, well before you were born; well before I even knew I wanted children. But it was there, written in my own upbringing and life experiences.
I don’t want you to grow up the way I see kids growing up today. Without manners or humility. Entitled. Greedy. I want you to be compassionate and caring, giving and loving. You all have my headstrong manner, and it makes me laugh because I know how much trouble it will bring you as you grow up, just as it brought me. And you can’t tell me I’m wrong, because I’m Mom, and I’m always right. Ha.
I cherish your innocence, and the way you process your surroundings. You hold out your hand to me, and although I see nothing, to you it contains all the delicious foods of your imagination. And I watch as you take your little pots and pans and you put your imaginary ingredients so tenderly inside and stir and stir and stir until your meal is just right. And then you share it, with me, with each other.
You giggle. At everything. Even when it’s not something I find conventionally funny. But to you it’s hilarious, and that always makes me laugh in turn.
I want to protect you from everything and keep you little forever. There is so much anger and hate in the world, and I want to spare you its pain, but I also want to prepare you for it, so it won’t hurt as much. I struggle with it all the time. When is the best time?
Live freely and explore everything, my babies. I want you to learn by doing. By experiencing. I know I won’t always like it, but know that no matter what happens, I will always be here for you. Loving you.
And when you decide to climb that tree, I will let you. But I will also be poised to call an ambulance if needed.