So... you appear to be hanging on to the bitter end, despite the midwife's suggestion that you were well on the way to meeting us all over a week ago. That's ok. I mean sure, I'm a little impatient - we all are - to meet you. But you will be here soon enough, and no doubt I will look back on this period of waiting - days or weeks or months into you being with us - and think I could have used this time differently - to better effect. For now though, I am trying hard not to do that very dangerous thing of wishing time away. There are Christmas preparations to make, craft projects to undertake that I never normally get the time to complete, and plenty of household chores to keep me busy for an eternity. You'll come when you are good and ready, I know that much from your brother who was a good fortnight "late". Has he been secretly whispering to you - daring you to stay in there just a little bit longer? challenging you to keep us waiting just a few more days? Is this the start of things to come? A sibling relationship full of childhood conspiracies and double daring?! Just remember, little one, he might be older than you but there's a lot to be said for knowing your own mind and choosing your own path. Keep that sentiment close - use it in every context, not just when determining the relationship you have with your big brother,
In any event, you will be here soon, and there will be lots for you to understand. Some of it will come quickly - instantly perhaps (crying will always get our attention, wet nappies are not pleasant, hats for babies are always ALWAYS far too big and, frankly, a pain in the butt. The former will normally ensure the latter two are rectified pretty speedily). Some things may take a little longer. I was lucky with your brother that feeding was something that we both mastered almost instantly. But you are not your brother, little one. There will be so many things in your life (and feeding may be the first of these) that you will do differently. That you will find more challenging or indeed easier than he did before you. My promise is this - that I will always support your efforts and I will not compare.
And then there are the things that perhaps you will never understand. That even I, in adulthood, struggle to make sense of. Some small and seemingly insignificant (why do baby wipes always come out of the packet in multiples? Why oh WHY are hats for newborn babies made so damn big??). Others are altogether bigger and scarier. News stories that shock you to tears. The things that people will do to other people in the name of religion, or greed or misplaced allegiances. The things that people will do to other living creatures in the name of sport. In truth I hope you will always struggle to make sense of these... to find needless cruelty, violence and hatred things that, in the very bones of you, simply don't have a place or a space.
BUT, and here's the sting in the tail - the thing that is often forgotten but which should always be remembered. There is real, genuine goodness out there. And that is far easier to understand. It is far more likely that you will encounter good people than bad. People who will help, support and guide you through all stages in life. Family. Your friends. Teachers. The person who finds your lost teddy and goes out of their way to track you down and return him. The person who stops to help you change a tyre on the side of the road when it is raining and a million cars have passed you by. Your future partner. The news may be full of scary things that defy comprehension, but scratch the surface a little and you will find an army of people striving to help in the face of adversity. Charity workers. Nurses. Doctors. People of all faiths, all nationalities, all sexualities coming together - this is what truly showcases human life. This is what you must focus on.
So as we near D-Day, and the world opens its arms to welcome you, I ask of you this, little one. Whatever you decide to do, whatever path you choose to take think hard about the sense it makes. The reasons for doing it. Know that as parents we will always support you. But know also that we will ensure that as you journey through life you do so asking questions and being fearless. But that most of all you do so by being kind.