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I didn’t know you would be /you/

Karibeth Baumann has spent November blogging letters to her young son Atticus. She finishes up today with a beautiful summary that captures something of the revelation that parenting is:

A few years ago, I was hanging out with some other women who were doing the thing where they complain about their husbands. Afterwards, one of them said to me that she noticed that I don’t complain about your dad. Which is true. I don’t talk about him dismissively or roll my eyes at him (except maybe when he makes a terrible joke). I enjoy spending time with him, and I try to take an interest in things that are important to him.

But for some reason, Atticus, I didn’t realize that I would feel the same way about you. I thought you would be a kid, and I am not so interested in kids. I am sorry, sweet boy, that I wasn’t more excited about you joining our family. I didn’t know you would be a person. I didn’t know you would be you. If I had known how bright and funny and wild you were going to be, I would have been so much more excited to meet you.

I have a friend who, every time that we were expecting a child, would say “I can’t wait to meet him/her”. The first time I heard it, it sounded a little weird to me. But getting to know the amazing people that your children already are is one of the great unexpected (at least to me) joys of parenting.

Kari’s whole month of letters is well worth the read.

[Through A Glass, Darkly]

One Comment

  1. I’ve never been a kid person either and I wasn’t much of a baby person but now that my kids are 4 and 7 I am totally into it. They are interesting and funny and they have these internal lives that are sorta like mine and Stephen’s but also something completely unique to them. Both of them seem like they will become people that I’d like to know separate from me being their mom and you know, being required by law to love them.

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