My sweet child,
Since before you were born—really since the time that I was born—I have loved you.
Before I knew what it is to be a mother, and certainly before I knew what it is to be your mother.
Before I knew what you felt like growing in my belly.
Before I knew the brilliant sparkle of your eyes and the raspy sound of your laughter.
I have loved you.
The truth is that love is all I know—all I can guarantee. And I hope every day that it will have been enough.
Because I am an imperfect parent, and this is an imperfect world.
I will do my very best to protect you, to teach you, to build a world that deserves you—but none of that is guaranteed.
So at the end of the day, in the quiet corners of the night, I lay awake and wonder: If everything falls apart will my love have been enough?
When after all these years I still haven’t filled in that baby book, will my love be enough to assure you that my brain is permanently etched with memories of you?
When we can’t afford to go on elaborate vacations, will my love be enough to make ordinary days feel like adventures?
When our house is messy beyond hope, will my love be enough to make it all feel like home anyway?
When the Tooth Fairy stops coming and Santa’s sleigh doesn’t land on our roof anymore, will my love be enough to still feel like magic?
When the state of the world weighs heavy on my heart and I collapse into tears in front of you, will my love be enough to teach you that there is still so much reason for hope?
Will my love be enough to nurture your kindness and your empathy?
And when it’s all said and done, when you are grown and your childhood is behind you, will my love have been enough?
When your adventures take you a thousand miles away from me, will my love have been enough to keep you brave?
When you fall and fail and fall again, will my love have been enough to get you back up on your feet?
When someone breaks your heart, will my love have been enough to help you believe that it won’t hurt forever?
When you have a child of your own, will my love have been enough to make you say, “Oh. I get it now, mom.”
And when I am gone, will my love have been enough to instill the knowledge that loving you was the greatest gift of my life?
I cannot promise you much, my sweet child. I can’t promise you riches and I can’t even promise you safety.
But love—love I can promise you a thousandfold.
So in the quiet corners of the night when you lay awake and wonder, I only hope you know with assuredness that you have always been enough. That loving you has been enough. That getting to be your mom and experiencing the magic and power and awe of you has always just been enough.