A Letter For My Daughter

babyLily,

There’s a lot you don’t know about how you came into this world, little girl, and I plan to tell you all about it. I’m not holding on to details too well right now, though, so I thought I’d write some of it down, just in case.

First – the practical stuff. You were born at 5:44pm, February 13th. You weighed 8lbs, 6oz, which is on the heavy side of normal, and measured 22″ long which is on the long side of normal. Your head was 37cm in circumference, which is on the big side of normal, and it took Mommy 24 hours of labour to deliver you (your love for consistency held fast: this, too, is normal, but longish). You were positioned face up (“sunny side up,” said your doctor) which is normal, though more difficult. You needed some vacuum help (normal, though more difficult) and then some forceps (normal, though more difficult). You had a bit of jaundice which kept us at the hospital for another day (normal, though more difficult). In every way that you could, you tried to tell us that you were bigger than life, and you were right.

There’s more you don’t know, though. You don’t know that daddy cried when you were born or that he’s thinking about crying now as he writes this. You don’t know that we’ve been working on you since 2007. You don’t know about your mommy and daddy beating a regular path to the fertility clinic before work most mornings; mommy getting bloodwork and ultrasounds on day 3, 10, 12, 14, 15 and 16 of every month – for nearly 2 years; or that the month you did show up was the one month we had no treatments at all, because mommy’s body needed a break. You don’t know that you weren’t our first positive pregnancy test.

But you’re here now, and we are happier than we’ve ever been. We can barely stay awake, we jump every time you make a noise, but we are awfully smitten with you. We haven’t had many visitors because it’s all still a bit overwhelming, but when visitors do show up, we are the proudest parents, showing you off. We barely recognize your daddy any more – he impulse buys onesies with dinosaurs on the front, and today he boiled nipples.

I can’t wait to tell you all about the world, and about your arrival, and about what an amazing woman your mommy is. I can’t wait to introduce you to the incredible village that has risen up around you and supported us three since the beginning. I can’t wait, but I’m going to try because I don’t want this to go any faster than it has to.

I love you, Lily Margaret Nightingale.

Daddy

11 comments

  1. You made me cry right here in front of everyone. I need to come visit VERY SOON.

  2. You’re a very lucky girl, Lily. You’re going to be loved so much and cared for so well that you may never realize how special it is.

    And you, sir, are going to be one hell of a daddy.

  3. Welcome to the world, Lily. You’re very lucky to have Johnath as your daddy and Amy as your mommy. I know they’ll be nervous at times, but I also know they’re going to be just great as parents.

    As a member of the village your daddy mentioned, I can’t wait to meet you, maybe take care of you eventually for an evening while your Mommy and Daddy go out for an evening, and eventually scare off your prospective suitors with big, gleaming, scary shotguns.

    Welcome to the world, kiddo.

  4. I don’t think I need to say this, but with all sincerity, welcome to the best part of your life. In time, much less that you expect, you will look back and wonder how you managed to get through each day without this vibrant, beautiful life you helped create.

  5. I have a policy against crying at work, but this seems a good time to make an exception. What a lucky child to have such a great set of parents.

  6. Wonderful story Johnathan. My prayers extend to you, Amy, and the beautiful addition of Lily.

  7. Welcome Lily! And congratulations to both of you, Johnathan and Amy, she’s adorable!

  8. Johnathan, by the time Lily is able to read this letter on her own, she will have told you a thousand times that you’re the best dad in the world — and she will be right.

    (Let’s hope this runs in the family, brother!)

  9. You totally made me cry in the middle of a PyCon talk. Geez. What a great opener to the beginning of a child’s life. Congrats and way to stick with it when it’s hard. This little girl also doesn’t know yet how awesomely funny and talented her dad is, but she will.

  10. Congratulations again — this was such a beautiful, moving post. I love that Lily can look back at this some day 🙂

  11. A little birdie told me the good news, so I just had to confirm it for myself.

    Congratulations on the arrival of Lily. Wishing you and Amy all the joys of parenthood. Very touching letter! It certainly brings back lots memory.

    Lorne