To My Best Friend's Baby

To My Best Friend’s Baby:

When your mom and I were twelve, we would create name lists. I don’t know why we started doing that—I guess a premature case of baby fever. We watched YouTubers, too, who would rate baby names, and we would send each other links to different videos. We talked a lot about how excited we were to be moms someday.

You don’t know this, but before you were ever created, before she ever even met your dad, there were days when you were the one who kept your mom going. We were only twelve when we were best friends, but even then she had days when she just didn’t think she could do it anymore. Sometimes life is like that. It will be like that for you, too. You’re going to hurt a lot in this life, and, as much as it breaks my heart to say it, you’re going to have days where you wonder why you’re even alive. We’ve all had those days. It sucks and it’s unfair and I don’t understand it, but I guess that’s life. You’re never going to understand all of it and all you can do is choose to love others and keep pushing forward. When your mom had those days, she would get frustrated and cry, but you kept her going.

You know how some people are just meant to do a certain thing? Like how Olympic athletes were just born to play their sport. Your mom was always meant to be a mom. She’s so many other things—a friend, a sister, a daughter—but even at age twelve, she knew that the most important thing she could ever be was a mom. On really hard days, I would encourage her by reminding her that someday she would have a child to love and this would all be worth it. That child is you.

When your mom and I created name lists, we always assumed that we’d have kids together. We’d stay best friends, move to the same city, and raise our kids together to be best friends.

People grow apart. I guess it’s best that I tell you this now, so that it doesn’t hit you as hard when it happens to you. In middle school, your mom and I were the best friends you could possibly imagine. She was my soulmate. My mom had to make a rule saying we could only talk on the phone for fifteen minutes every hour, because otherwise I’d stay in my room all the time, talking to her about the cute eighth grade boys and what I believed about God and whether Justin Bieber was dating Selena Gomez. If someone had told me that your mom and I would ever stop being friends, I would have cried and cried and cried.

I don’t remember why or how we grew apart. Our friendship wasn’t perfect, that’s for sure. But I think, more than anything, we both just changed. Change is good. I’m not the same person I was when I was best friends with your mom, and she’s probably not the same person she was then either. I’m glad I’ve changed so much, because I’ve learned a lot and ultimately grown into a smarter, kinder person. But it was also hard, because one day I woke up and realized I didn’t even know if your mom still went to my school.

Did you know you were born in the same month as Kylie Jenner’s baby? If not, that’s probably good. But Kylie Jenner is a celebrity who is the same age as your mom and me, and earlier in the month that you were born, she posted a video for her baby entitled “To Our Daughter”. Of course, the whole time I watched the video, I thought of your mom, and how she was going to have you sometime that month. In the video, Kylie’s friend Jordyn says, “When you’re twenty years old, you’re just figuring out your life. You don’t know what you want, you’re an indecisive teenager and you’re just becoming a young adult. And there was one thing that your mom knew for sure, and that was you.”

In middle school, I used to give your mom so much crap for being seventy-five days younger than me, mostly because I was closer in age with Justin Bieber. But I feel like your mom is a lifetime older than me now. I’m not sure about much of anything in life—what I’m studying, what career I’m going to have, if I’ll ever get married or have kids. But your mom has a constant in her life, one thing she’ll love no matter what, and that’s you.

Even though you’re the constant in your mom’s life, it’s okay if you don’t feel constant all of the time. None of us do. You’ll wonder who God is, why you’re alive, why you got placed in this particular life. You’ll have doubts. We all do. It doesn’t make you a bad person. Hopefully, amidst those doubts, you’ll have some really good days. Days where your heart is so full that you can’t stop smiling and you don’t even know how to handle it. Those days and the bad days alike make life worth living.

I wish I could tell you how to live, enlighten you with some auntie wisdom, but I’m still learning myself. Sometimes I’ll feel like I have it together, but then I’ll wake up one morning and realize that I still do things that are as stupid and irrational as the things I did when I was five. I make a lot of mistakes. Like, a lot. I’m lucky I have a God who forgives and friends and family who love me unconditionally. You have those things too, by the way, and it’s lucky for you, too, because you won’t be perfect either.

You’re a miracle, though, despite all your imperfections and weaknesses and mistakes. You know that, right? Jesus created you with his own hands, looked at you and gave you a plan and a future, and he loves you more than you could ever imagine. And he gave you the best mom in the world.

She’s not going to be perfect—at least not if she’s anything like she was in 7th grade. She’s headstrong and sassy and sensitive. I think one of the world’s best kept secrets is that moms are people too. They have feelings and insecurities and thoughts and dreams just like the rest of us. But man, I know your mom, and she will fight for you. She will love you more than life itself and she will put you before herself every single time.

It’s going to be a good life. I am so thankful to welcome you into this planet.

Much love,

Aunt Hannah

 

Images Courtesy of:  Hannah Harshe and 123rf.com