Dear sweet Lucy,
One of the many questions I get asked about you is what I hope for your life. What do I want to see you accomplish during your time here on earth? And the answer to that question is quite simple in some ways, and extremely complicated in others. But here's the short version.
I want you to know joy. I want you to know peace. And I want you to know where those things come from.
You see, I understand that as your mother I have the very great privilege of making sure that you become the kind of person who not only succeeds in life, but also has the knowledge of how to succeed. What does that mean? Well, you will make your own choices one day. You will decide how you want to live...but the kind of choices you make will heavily depend on the kind of mother I am. And although this is admittedly a bit frightening for me, I also have to admit I'm looking forward to teaching you what my mother and father taught me. Because, baby girl, they gave me some great lessons. I am in charge of myself (and one day you will be, too), but my ability to recognize who I am and what I'm capable of came from having parents who showed me the truth.
So here's my attempt- which I'm sure will be the first of many- to teach you the truth, little one.
You were created. You are not merely an accidental combination of physical attributes that came together by coincidence. You are, at this very moment, being knit together inside of my body. Every detail is handcrafted. Your face. Your eyes. Your little fingers and toes. Your heart and brain and blood. All of it. You see, your Creator was a carpenter once so He knows a thing or two about how to build the perfect piece of art. And that's what you are.
You are also flawed. I know that might seem a little contradictory since I just got done writing about how perfect you are, so let me explain. Your body is designed exactly the way it is for a reason, although we may not know the reason at first...or ever. But you are going to be born into an imperfect world and, as such, your body will one day breathe its last breath. It will not last forever because it's not meant to. And, my sweet girl, during your life you will make mistakes. You will stumble and fall. You will hurt and be hurt. But there is beauty in the mess. Your Creator is also pretty gifted at making sure of that, too. My biggest hope for you is that one day you'll choose to believe He has saved you from the imperfections of this life. This, baby girl, is the beginning of peace. This is the beginning of true joy. This is what perfection really looks like.
Perhaps I should tell you now about how I hope you'll go to college, and marry a good man, and have babies of your own. But the truth is I don't care about any of that. Not because those are not important things. They are beautiful treasures. I know because I made those choices and I wouldn't change them for the world. But that's just it: those were my choices. They don't have to be yours. The world will tell you otherwise. They will want you to emulate what they've done...the progress they've made. They will tell you that you should follow their lead if you want to be beautiful...they will tell you you're not successful if your income doesn't fall within a certain tax bracket...they will tell you that the amount of stuff you have is equal to how valuable you are. But excuse me baby girl when I say that is all bullshit. Complete and total bullshit. You will never be more or less worthy than you are at this very moment...and it's not because I say so. It's because He does.
We're back to Him again. Lucy, my love, it all comes back to Him.
All I want for you is to know who He is and live your life in a way that honors His love for you. I want you to see beyond what people look like and remember that they all have stories. Maybe they're angry or unkind or frustrated...but I can promise there's a reason why. Maybe they're loud or insecure or bossy...and there are reasons for that, too. Pay attention to the details and don't write off those people who don't look or act like you. But be cautious, as well. Knowing that every person has a story does not mean you should let them become a part of yours. It's okay to walk away. It's okay to protect yourself. It's okay to feel uncertain and reach out for help. Sometimes you will need it. And I promise I'll always be here to help.
Lucy, I love you so much. And I know that in order for you to grasp hold of what I've written here it first has to come from me. And your daddy. We have to show you bravery and courage. We have to show you respect. We have to show you wisdom. We have to love without restraint and let you see what that looks like. We have to forgive. We have to take chances and follow through with our choices and give you the confidence to do the same. We have to admit our failures so you don't become paralyzed with fear when you do something we might not like. Don't worry. There will always be times like that. But your mistakes will not define you. They will simply give you the tools you need to make better choices next time around (so please use them).
Lucy, I write this letter for you. But I also write it to remind myself of the promises I will make, starting in this very moment. Sometimes I will mess up. Sometimes I will yell at you or get frustrated or refuse to hear what you're trying to tell me. And I hope that in those moments I will have shown you enough grace that you'll remember my love never changes, despite my imperfections. Because I was created, too. I was knit together inside my mother with a purpose. And I was saved because He knew that, one day, there would be a beautiful little girl named Lucy who would need a mother.
I'm waiting for you, baby girl. I'll see you soon.